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Afghanistan 116, Us 47, America 34, U.s. 26, Mr. Dicks 23, Nascar 20, United States 19, Madam 16, Pentagon 16, California 16, Florida 13, Taliban 12, Washington 11, Georgia 9, Mr. Ryan 8, The Navy 8, Oregon 8, Osama Bin 8, North Carolina 7, Kingston 7,
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  CSPAN    U.S. House of Representatives    News  News/Business. Live  
   coverage of House proceedings.  

    July 18, 2012
    1:00 - 4:59pm EDT  

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capacity. in the absence of definitive guidance if the d.o.d., the o.m.b., the defense contract management agency, we feel come peeled to -- compelled to act in the spird of this law and in all likelihood will issue notice tots those employees engaged in ongoing federal contract activities, end quote. we are going to put thousands of people in jeopardy of their jobs between now and when sequestration should kick in. this is already in motion. madam speaker, i ask madam speaker i ask we come together on this issue. that we solve this issue. i ask the president to put forth some leadership to let -- as commander in chief he has the obligation to help us to solve this problem. i ask our colleagues to please support this legislation. bring transparency. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from maryland is
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recognized. mr. van hollen: thank you, madam speaker. i listened carefully to what the chairman of the armed services committee said, and i didn't find much that i disagree with. we agree that we should replace the sequester. we agree that it's a mistake to create the kind of uncertainty that's out there, and obviously it has an impact not just in the defense sector, but also in all the other areas where our federal government has activities. but i would just say, and i want to make sure the chairman's on the floor now and has a chance to respond, he demonstrated some leadership on this issue. last fall, because he was asked this question, he was asked if he had to put together a plan that included some revenue, he said, yeah. i understand we got to make cuts, but i'd rather include some revenue than deep cuts to defense. in fact, what he said was, we are going to have to stop
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repeating ideological talking points and address our budget problems comprehensively through smarter spending and increased revenue, unquote. and when asked whether he would -- would choose between deeper cuts in defense and cutting some tax breaks, he said we should cut some takes. that was last fall. -- tax breaks. that's was last fall. that's exactly what the democrats put forward in the budget committee. the chairman of the committee asked for a specific plan. we had a vote on it in the budget committee. we wish our colleagues would have supported it. it would have prevented the sequester from taking place for another year, eliminated all the uncertainty the chairman of the armed services committee just talked about. the reason that we haven't been able to move forward is our republican colleagues continue to insist on supporting these tax breaks for special interests and tax breaks for votes at the very top and refuse to eliminate those tax breaks for the purpose of reducing the deficit.
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or more the purpose of eliminating the sequester on defense and nondefense. that's why we are in the situation we are right now. the keys to the lock are in the hands of our republican colleagues. we had the same proposal ready to bring to a vote before the whole house of representatives as far as the reconciliation process. the rules committee didn't even allow our proposal to be made in order so that members of this body could vote on it. up or down. so, yeah, let's get on with the main issue. let's focus on replacing the see quester. let's do it in a balanced way. i have to say since the gentleman from texas earlier referenced the comments, i looked at the senator's comments. the senator's point is the same one i'm making here. if we are going to remove the see quester, we need to take a balanced approach. we need to include cuts, and again, it's important to remember, we did $1 trillion in
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cuts. $100% cuts as part of the budget control act. we also need to include some revenue by eliminating some of these special interest tax breaks and asking folks at the very top of the income ladder to pay a little bit more for national definance and reducing our deficit. that is the underlying issue here. i now yield two minutes to the gentlelady from oregon, a member of the budget committee, ms. bonamici. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from oregon is recognized for two minutes. ms. bonamici: thank you, congressman van hollen, for yielding. i rise in support of the sequestration transparency act. we have all heard concerns back home about partisan gridlock in our nation's capital. our constituents continue to ask us, is there any way to overcome this gridlock to solve the problems facing our country? they ask us if it's getting better? if congress can do something? can we get things done? with the end of the year approaching and our country inching ever closer to the
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so-called fiscal cliff, the questions from our constituents take on a new urgency. they want to know what's going to happen if the budget sequestration is allowed to go into effect. and they want to know if congress can function well enough to avoid the doomsday scenarios that many economists are predicting if sequestration does occur. up until now we have had to -- not been able to offer them much in the way of positive news. we have had to tell our constituents that we are not quite sure what sequestration will mean for our community. now, this bill doesn't solve the problems our constituents will face if sequestration actually goes into effect. the lost jobs or the damage o our still struggling economy, but it does give us valuable information about what might happen and it will allow us, the body that brought us here in the first place with the passage of the budget control act, to at least better understand the consequences of our actions. and importantly it signals a bipartisan action on the part of congress to ask how bad will
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this be? if there is a silver lining to be found, it's we have come together on what could have been a contentious piece of legislation and i thank the budget committee chairman and ranking member for their leadership. now the fact that we have to pass a bill to get information on legislation that we have already passed does not speak highly of the process. the sequester was supposed to motivate us to work together and pass a budget that lowers costs while maintaining critical services. it's unfortunate that we have to pass yet another bill to move us closer to accomplishing what should have been done months ago. but for the sake of better representing our constituents, let's focus on the positive, let's support a bill that gives us the information we as legislators need to make an educated decision. i hope today's bipartisan action is an indicator of a renewed commitment to tackling the sequester. 15 seconds. mr. van hollen: 15 seconds.
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ms. bonamici: i hope it is an indicator of a renewed commitment to tackling the sequester and sends a message to our constituents that we can work together to get something done. that's why i supported this bill in the budget committee and that's why i'm asking my colleagues to join me in voting yes on the sequester transparency act. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized. mr. ryan: i yield two minutes to a distinguished member of the house budget and armed services committee, the gentleman from indiana, mr. young. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from indiana is recognized. mr. young: mr. speaker, there is broad bipartisan agreement in this house that the looming defense sequestration cuts are bad policy for the u.s. military and our national defense. our defense secretary has testified to myself and other members that the armed services committee that such cuts would hollow out the military. our constituents are rightly concerned about our ability to provide necessary equipment to troops in the field. troops that are often our sons, daughters, brothers, or
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sisters. the original goal of this legislation that gave us the sequester was to find deficit reduction in the federal budget in a careful, deliberative manner. despite their best efforts, the small group that was charged with finding these cuts failed in the end. that's why we have passed legislation in the full house to replace the defense cuts with deficit reduction elsewhere. but the senate has once again failed to act. as for the administration, it's failed to specify how these cuts will be distributed and what kind of impact it will have on our nation's security. military spending decision should not be made in a vacuum. we shouldn't merely try to manage down to some predetermined, arbitrary spending level. ultimately strategy should guide these sorts of decisions. missions we are asking our men and women in uniform to perform to keep our country safe should be our measuring stick and we should ensure full funding exists to carrying out each of
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these missions. the bottom line is this, it's the responsibility of this administration to inform congress and the american public of its plan to implement the sequester and provide clarification on its scope and severity. with that i strongly urge my colleagues to support this bipartisan legislation, the sequestration transparency act of 2012. i yield back the remainder of my time. mr. ryan: mr. speaker. i'd like to additionally yield two minutes to a gentleman whose primary committee, serves on the budget committee and he also is on the appropriations committee, the gentleman from oklahoma, mr. cole. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes the gentleman from oklahoma, mr. cole. mr. cole: i thank the speaker. i thank you for including me on your committee. h.r. 5872 is a bipartisan bill and it did pass out of the budget committee unanimously as has been mentioned several times here. that's a good thing. i think honestly we have a very strong bipartisan agreement
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that sequester is a very bad policy, something that really shouldn't be allowed to happen. obviously i also sit on defense appropriations subcommittee and so i focus on that area and if we don't arrive at an agreement before the end of the year, we'll have $110 billion worth of cuts, but about a 10% cut on top of a half a billion dollars we have already taken out of defense. that will have tremendous consequences in my state, potentially 16,000 jobs, $620 million, $630 million to the state's economy. we all hope this doesn't occur. but we all know that the administration does have a responsibility to plan for it and to inform us of those plans. so far it's failed to do that. worth noting for the record, mr. speaker, that we have dealt with sequestration in this house. we have passed a measure to avoid it. it's the senate that has failed to act. we may not have acted in a manner in which our friends on the other side would like, but the responsibility now is with
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the united states senate to at least pass something and put us in the position to go to conference. it would be irresponsible to allow sequester to occur. and it would be responsible for the senate to actually act. so i hope today by giving the senate additional information by encouraging the administration to plan for something we hope doesn't happen, will actually bring ourselves a little closer to a solution and will come to a bipartisan compromise by the end of this year. i urge the passage of this legislation. yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. who seeks recognition? mr. ryan: i believe i have the right to close. the speaker pro tempore: who
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seeks recognition? million ryan: let me inquire to the gentleman from maryland whether or not they have another speaker or not. mr. van hollen: there was one other gentleman who said he was on the way. he's not here yet f he's not here, then we'll close. mr. ryan: i yield two minutes to mr. lankford. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes mr. lankford from oklahoma. mr. lang glord -- mr. lankford: at home people have a simple request of congress, do our job. just do it. they are tired of worrying about what dumb thing the federal government will do to them and their family that will cause them more pain. they want us to identify the problem, fix it, and quit messing with the private business world. when the private business sees a threat on the horizon, they prepare for it. if it's good they ramp up hiring, increase training, they get red he -- ready for good. if they see a threat on the horizon that looks bad, they pull back. they slow down internal purchases, freeze inventory and hiring. two quick observations.
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one is this, right now the national threat on the economic horizon is the federal government lack of hurry to resolve this manufactured crisis. we need to fix it now. the second thing is this, we have to look up and see there is a financial crisis coming and prepare for it. if we wait until the last minute to act, it creates incredible uncertainty in our economy and businesses and families can't prepare for it. when we run all the way to the last minute and do something, we have already created all the economic uncertainty there. so here's what this bill does. it requires that we actually plan for an economic crisis that we know is coming january 2 of 2013. it pushes us to do what's essential right now. federal spending has dramatically increased as we approach $16 trillion in national debt and our fourth straight year of trillion dollar deficit spending, we should not guess or try to just make up the financial plan at the last minute. some propose that we debt our way into prosperity.
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or that we take even more money from one family and give it to another to make life fair. this bill just simply asks the president to let us know the plan, let us know the consequences of sequestration. we know it's bad policy. but the administration has not given us the details of how they will implement the sequestration. months ago the house budget committee and the full house worked with six committees to create a specific plan of how we were going to deal with this. we just want to know what o.m.b.'s plan is and how things are going to be done, get us the information now. with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, mr. speaker. may i inquire how much time we have left? the speaker pro tempore: eight minutes. mr. van hollen: thank you, mr. speaker. let me start on the points of agreement. we agree with the piece of legislation as we have said it passed the budget committee unanimously. what it does is ask for some more detailed information on the impact of the across-the-board sequester scheduled to take place in
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january. the senate also agrees with that. let's make no mistake. there was an amendment on the senate side, bipartisan amendment, washington state senator mccain, bipartisan amendment asking for additional information. there is also agreement that we don't need more information to understand that the across-the-board sequester cuts would have a very negative impact on the economy and on defense and on important nondefense investments that are important to the american people. so the issue really is, what are we going to do about it? . we have proposed an alternative in this house. we proposed an alternative in the budget committee, it didn't pass. we asked for this whole house to have an alternative to vote on that included cuts and additional revenue from closing tax breaks and loopholes. we were denied that opportunity
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for a vote over here. let's be clear about what senator reid has said and ha the president has said on a number of issues, both the tax issue as well as the sequestration issue that we're debating today. the president of the united states has been very clear. he would like, today, for the congress to pass legislation to extend tax relief to 98% of the american people. all the middle class tax cuts. get it done today. in fact, what some people don't realize, those tax cuts would also benefit folks at the very top. it provides tax relief to 100% of americans compared to current law. let's get that done. if we agree on it, let's act now. the same is true with the sequester. the keys to this lock are in the hands of our republican colleagues. we've agreed that part -- that part of the solution is cuts. we did $1 trillion in cuts last year. 100%. cuts. we've also said we can do
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additional cuts. but we should also deal with the revenue side of the equation if we're serious about the deficit. now the chairman talked about our use of the word balance. it's the same use the bipartisan commissions have made, simpson-bowles and others, what they have said is any credible approach to the deficit, include regular placing the sequester, requires cuts, yes, put also revenues. and the reality is, in this house of representatives, 8% of our republican 98% of our republican colleagues have signed this pledge by a fellow named grover norquist. it says you can't eliminate any tax breaks or ask folks that are making more than thrs 1 million a year to pay one more dollar for the purpose of deficit reduction. won't do it. nor does that pledge allow them
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to take a dollar tax subsidy away for the purpose of defense spending. so we hear a lot of talk about the importance of defense spending. we agree. secretary panetta has talked about it. we think we should pay for it. so rather than just talk about defense spend, why don't we also pay for it? we put two woorns our national credit card, iran and afghanistan. many of us proposed we help pay for those as we go so we wouldn't be leaving the bill to the future generations, to the children of the troops fighting those wars. we should pay for them. but no, those two wars went on the credit card. now we're talking about defense. armed services committee has a hearing today on defense. as we said, we agree. we don't want to see that but when faced with that simple choice, do you want to cut more tax breaks for oil companies or ask those at the very top to pay more for defense to reduce
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the deficit? no, can't touch that. so let's understand the underlying issue here. both on the tax issues at the end of the year, we can solve them today. if our republican colleagues will stop holding 98% of the american taxpayers hostage until they get a continuation of tax breaks for the folks at the very top and we can deal with the sequester today if our colleagues are willing to take the plansed approach recommended by every bipartisan commission. that's what is at issue. let me close, mr. speaker, with this. we have heard a lot of talk about how asking folks at the very top to pay ate ll more would hurt the economy. the reality is, we've try toad trickle down theory. it's in place right now. we tried it for eight years under the previous administration. the last time we had a balanced budget was at the on the -- the end of the clinton administration. then the tax cuts
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disproportionately benefited the very wealthy and at the end of those eight years we lost private sector jobs. so much for the theory that tax breaks for those at the very top trickle down and lift everybody up. they lived the yachts but the boats ran aground. that's the -- they lifted the yachts but the boats ran aground. that's the reality. when it comes down to it, we're willing to make tough cuts and we're going to make more. but because of this pledge or other reasons, our republican colleagues refuse to deal with the deficit in a balanced way. they refuse to ask folks at the very top to chip in a little bit more to reduce our deficits and to help pay for defense. so let's take action today to prevent the cuts, not just to defense but to nondefense. it's interest, i hear our republican colleagues talk about the jobs created by defense, that's true, building
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aircraft carriers creates jobs. somehow that creates jobs but building roads and bridges doesn't. the president has a jobs bill, it's been sitting here since september. we have 14% unemployment in the construction industry. we have roads and bridges and transit systems in need of repair. the american society of civil engineers is giving our nation a d, a grade d, so it's a win-win. let's spend more there, boost jobs, the economy do, a job that needs to be done. but no, you know, cutting defense spending and work on tarnings, that -- on tanks, that will cut -- will hurt job bus it's ok not to fund the president's infrastructure proposal, to put people back to work building bridges and roads. let's have a rational conversation, mr. speaker, here, about what works and what doesn't work and how we can take the balanced approach to reducing our deficit and
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eliminating, replacing the sequester so we can avoid the cuts to both defense and nondefense. i look forward to getting the information called for by this piece of legislation, overplet m.b. is actually -- o.m.b. is actually already crunching the numbers, there are lots of details, i hear, but our time here would be best spent putting in place a plan sequest than simply asking for more information. more information is good, solving the problem s better. thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin. mr. ryan: how much time do i have left? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman has two minutes. mr. ryan: i ok. mr. van hollen: i'd like to correct, i patiently i said
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iraq when i meant iran. mr. ryan: if spend wrg prosperity, we'd be at the on of the world along with greece. their so called balanced approach is balanced but only because the increase had a $85 billion tax increase. if we keep going down this road, we'll keep getting the same results. what did we start with in this congress? we passed a budget that cuts spend, reformed government, reformed the taxes to get us back to economic growth to pay back the debt. the senate hasn't passed a budget for three years. when we engage in negotiations on the debt limit to try to get a down payment on deficit reduction and the budget control act resulted. therefore the supercommittee failed and the sequester is about to kick. in again we took action in the house. we passed the reconciliation to replace the sequester which
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resulted in a net $242 billion in additional reduction. we put specifics on the table, passed them through the house, again the crickets are chirping in the other body, in the senate. no leadership if the president, no leadership from the senate. no leadership. what this is, is simple. since there's an absence of leadership on these critical fiscal issues, from the president of the united states from the senate of the united states, at the very least show us how this is going to work. if you're not willing to replace the sequester, tell us how it's going to be implemented. that is simply a matter of transparency. we're not judging the debate or the merits of each other's ideas how to replace it, we're telling o.m.b., tell us how it's going to go down because that seems to be the plan. with that, i encourage all members to follow the bipartisan example that's been
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set in the budget committee and have a nice, bipartisan vote on behalf of transparency from the legislative branch. with that, i yield. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 5872 as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, twerds being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the -- mr. ryan: i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. those favoring a vote by the yeas and nays will rise. a sufficient number having risen, the yeas and nays are ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a 15-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is
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expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote, the yeas are 414, the nays are 2. zero rored -- zero recorded as present. without objection, the bill is passed and without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from florida seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and to include extraneous material on h.r. 5856, and that i may include tabular material on the same. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. pursuant to house resolution
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717 and rule 18, the chair declares the house in the committee of the whole house on the state of the union for the consideration of h.r. 5856. the chair appoints the gentleman from texas, mr. marchand, to preside over the committee of the whole. the chair: the house is in the committee of the whole house on the state of the union for the consideration of h.r. 5856 which the clerk will report the title. the clerk: a bill making appropriations for the department of defense for the fiscal year ending september 30, 2013, and for other purposes. the chair: pursuant to the rule, the bill is considered read for the first time, the gentleman from florida, mr. young, and the swrelt from washington, mr. dick -- and the gentleman from washington, mr. dicks, each will control 30 minutes. the chair recognizes the
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gentleman from florida. mr. young: mr. chairman, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the chair: the gentleman is reck nighed. mr. young: -- is recognized. mr. young: this is the defense appropriations bill for 2013. it has been drawn with the cooperation of republicans and the democrats on the subcommittee, the democrats led by norm dicks and norm and i have worked together for so many years making sure that these defense appropriations bills were strictly nonpolitical. no politics in defense appropriations. and there should not be. investment in our national defense should be based on the threat to the united states and what does it take to protect against that threat and what does it take to protect the men and women who provide for that national defense. i want to compliment mr. dicks
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for having worked together with each other so well regardless of who was in the majority for 35 years, mr. dicks, and i just want to recognize this will be the last bill, defense appropriations bill, that mr. dicks will preside over on the floor because he is seeking retirement at the end of the term. this committee will miss mr. dicks, the house will miss mr. dicks. the congress will miss mr. dicks. the country will miss his service to the united states of america for so many years. mr. dicks, i extend to you my very, very best and my appreciation and thanks for your friendship and your spirit of cooperation over the many years. the subcommittee had many hearings and many briefings on so many subjects that it took most of the year leading up to this date in order to do that. one of the things -- i would
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compliment the members of the subcommittee, because they were very attentive. attendance at the subcommittee hearings, meetings, were all very, very well attended. the members were very loyal and faithful to their assignments and to their responsibilities. during these hearings, we heard one word that bothered me a lot. that was a word risk. as we got into the issue of the budget request, we were told that this might bring about a certain risk or imprudent risk or unacceptable risk and we pursued the issue of what is an acceptable risk when it comes to national defense. what is imprudent risk? let me explain some of the things we heard. one, we were told the united states is going to show much more presence in the pacific area.
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i agree with that. it's a very, very important part of the world and we have got to be present. the other point was that as we did our hearings, we were told in the mid east, the persian gulf area, we neeled a buildup of naval forces. in order to do the job that has to be done. especially as we watch what iran is doing, what iran is threatening to do, and the choke point of the straits of hormuz where much of the world's oil transports. well, these risks, we think, have been met. on the navy buildup, the budget request action would reduce the naval capability, the numb of assets that we have, so we differed with the budget request on that and we added funding and by the way, with the support of the secretary of the navy, we added funding for an additional destroyer.
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in addition, secretary of the navy was really determined to build a second virginia class submarine for 2014 and it was not in the budget. but he convinced us it was important to do. beside the ddg-51 we scheduled the second virginia class submarine for 2014. in addition, there are three cruisers that were about to be decommissioned, and for a lesser fee than decommissioning we determined to keep those cruisers in business and keep them capable and keep them available for that naval buildup that our heroes told us that the navy felt that they really needed. one other issue i'd like to raise is the air force -- and we're not at war with the air force, by the way, but we have some differences. the air force determined to
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take away aviation assets from the air national guard in our states, and we heard from all of our governors, we heard from all of the tags, the generals, that this would really be crippling to the air national guard and the air national guard if those assets were lost. so we recommended to the air force we provided $850 million to do what we call a pause, to let's get together and let's work with the states, let's work with the governors, let's work with the generals to see what is the right thing to do here and not deny the states the assets that they need, the aviation assets that they need. there's so much more to this bill. the bill has been available online. the copies of the bill have been available. the lists of all of the issues have been isolated in press releases so the actual contents of the bill have been available
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for weeks, and so at this point i am not going to go further into the bill but i will reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. dicks: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. dicks: mr. chairman, i rise in support of the fiscal year 2013 department of defense bill. i first want to thank chairman young for his very generous comments about my service on the defense subcommittee, and he is absolutely right, we have always, no matter who was chairman or which party was in controlled, we've always on a bipartisan basis worked to take care of the needs of our troops and make sure we were properly funded and had equipment and to do it on the basis of what was right and what was necessary. and i appreciate his leadership
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on this subcommittee, and i wish him well as we finish up this year. this bill continues the defense subcommittee's long tradition, as i mentioned, strong bipartisan and finding common ground as we worked together under mr. young's leadership to find common goals. the subcommittee has again crafted a bill that places national security and the needs of u.s. service members above partisan politics. i strongly support the priorities set in this bill. the bill supports our troops. it includes funding for the third year -- consecutive year to replace inadequate schools owned by local educational authorities under the department of education that are located on military installations. it includes $40 million above the request for impact aid. it includes $125 million above the request for traumatic brain injury and psychological health
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as well as additional $20 million above the request for suicide prevention and outreach. and the bill has a total of $1.2 billion in defense, health, program, research and development. $545 million above the request. the bill continues the committee's longstanding support for peer reviewed breast cancer research, peer reviewed prostrate research, vision research, spinal chord research and many other research initiatives. the bill supports the guard and reserve. it includes funding to pause reductions and aircraft retirements posed by the air force that would affect air guard and reserve units across the country. and the bill contains $2 billion for the national guard and reserve equipment account. the bill supports today's equipment needs and develops tomorrow's technology. it supports secretary panetta's strategic focus on the asia
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pacific region by including robust funding for shipbuilding. the bill supports d.o.d.'s intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance needs by providing the resources for global hawk u.a.v.'s. the bill addresses the navy's strike fighter shortfall by funding f-18 hornets and providing procurements for f-18-g electronic attack aircraft. the bill provides for ground equipments such as the abe -- abram's tank, bradley and humvee. it includes the guard and reserve and helps maintain a stable industrial base. the bill includes $250 million for the rapid innovation fund that will continue the committee's evers started in 2011 -- efforts started in 2011 to promote technologies among small businesses. and the bill includes funding above the request for joint
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u.s.-israeli missile defense technologies, including $680 million for iron dome. the bill funds operations in afghanistan, consistent with the president's plan to wind down our presence as agreed to in the lisbon accord of 2010 and this year's nato summit in chicago. the bill also includes important restrictions on d.o.d. activities. the bill prohibits permanent u.s. bases in iraq or afghanistan and prohibits u.s. control over iraqi oil resources. the bill prohibits the torture of detainees. the bill prohibits training foreign military forces if these forces are known to commit gross violations of human rights. and the bill limits reimbursements to pakistan and to the secretary of defense in consultation with the secretary of state certifies that pakistan is working cooperatively with the u.s. against terrorist activity. while i support the funding
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level and priorities included in this bill, i must also express my objection to -- not to mr. young but to the majority's decision to renege on the bipartisan agreement reached less than a year ago in the budget control act. i believe the reduced allocation in the ryan budget threatens job creation. it will not allow us to produce these bills in a timely manner. accordingly, it is my belief that we could save a considerable amount of time in the appropriations process if we simply return to the agreement reached last year in august. the $1.047 trillion allocation level for this year, a level which even the republican -- other body leadership concedes is where we will eventually end up.
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despite this reservation, i want to congratulate chairman young for producing a bill that meets the most pressing needs of the department of defense and doing so in the best tradition of the appropriations committee. i must say that i feel we have one of the best staffs on the whole hill. i know paul and tom have worked together when paul was the clerk and tom was the -- representing mr. young as the ranking member and the cooperation of all the staff members has been extraordinary and they worked very hard to get to -- prepare this bill for the floor. and i want to congratulate them on their good efforts. and also i want to thank mr. rogers for his efforts to restore regular order. i think it's outstanding we have had this bill in the subcommittee markup, full committee markup, now brought
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to the floor under an open rule, and this is the way this committee should operate. and i just appreciate his efforts to provide that leadership. and with that i will reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the chair recognizes mr. young. mr. young: i yield five minutes to the distinguished chairman of the appropriations committee, mr. rogers. the chair: the chair recognizes the gentleman from kentucky. mr. rogers: thank you, mr. chairman. i rise in support of this essential bill. it provides more than $519 billion in critical resources for a strong national defense, supporting our war fighters and protecting the american people. this is an increase of $1.1 billion over last year, more than $3 billion more than what the president asked of us. it's also more than $8 billion over what the senate democrats
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would like to provide. this nation, with all the opportunities it provides and the rights it grants, would not be the bastion of freedom without the greatest defense system in the world. freedom is not free. as we continue to face threats to our safety and way of life, we must deal with the costs of war, keep our military at the ready and stay constantly vidgelept. this bill supports and takes -- vigilant. this bill supports and takes care of our troops at the highest level possible providing 1.7% pay raise. we provided $31.5 billion for health and family programs, including funding for traumatic brain injury research and suicide prevention outreach programs. this legislation keeps america at the forefront of defense
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technologies by continuing research and development efforts. we boost key training and readiness programs to prepare our troops for combat and peacetime missions with an increase of $12.1 billion for operations and maintenance. we also enhance our military with $102.5 billion for equipment and upgrades. and we continue fighting the global war on terror by including $88.5 billion for overseas contingency operations. but in this environment of fiscal austerity, the committee recognized that even the pentagon should not have carte blanche when it comes to discretionary spending. we increased oversight and took a balanced approach to budgeting. commonsense decisions were made to save tax dollars wherever possible, including rescinding unused prior year funds and
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terminating unnecessary programs like the medium extended air defense system. but we can guarantee that none of these cuts will affect the safety or success of our troops and missions. the bill also prohibits funding for the transfers of guantanamo detainees to the u.s. or its territories, prohibits funding to modify any facility in the u.s. to house detainees and places strict conditions on the release of detainees. all provisions that were authorized under the national defense authorization. i want to take a moment, mr. chairman, to recognize the appropriation committee's ranking member, mr. dicks, who also serves as ranking member of this defense subcommittee. he's been a permittable servant to the american people and a dedicated usher of appropriations dollars for some
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36 years, and we appreciate his service. and as he moves to another phase of his life, we wish him well and god speed. he's been a great member of this committee and subcommittee and of this congress. also, i want to say a word of thanks to jerry lewis of california who's been a member and chairman of the defense subcommittee and the full committee for his many years of service to the appropriations process and to this congress. we are sorry to lose the expertise, the leadership, talent, friendship of these two gentlemen when they retire at the end of this year, but we wish them well in their next pursuits in life. the appropriations committee has been made stronger, more responsive -- responsible and respectful thanks to these two outstanding and upstanding legislators and appropriators. i also want to say a word of congratulations and thanks to
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our chairman, bill young, and to this great staff that norm dicks has referred to as the greatest on the hill, and i can't dispute that. they've worked long and hard on a very, very tough bill under austere circumstances. to put together a bill that's necessary for our nation's defense. and these many hours and capable hands that have had a touch on this bill, i think have crafted a successful, bipartisan bill that all of us can be proud to support. so congratulations, chairman young, for a -- for another great job and you bring such expertise and experience to this chore that is so much appreciated by this body. mr. chairman, this is a must-pass piece of legislation, vital to the security of our homeland and the safety and health of our troops and veterans. i urge my colleagues to support this great nation and to prove
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this necessary -- and approve this necessary bill. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from washington. mr. dicks: i want to yield three minutes to a senior member of the appropriations committee a member of the defense subcommittee, congresswoman kaptur from ohio. the chair: the gentlelady from ohio is recognized. ms. kaptur: mr. chairman, i want to thank the gentleman from washington for yielding me this time. i want to acknowledge the work of our full committee under the chairmanship of mr. rogers. obviously the wonderful work of our chairman, bill young, and our subcommittee ranking member, mr. dicks. their collegial work has made this bill possible and it will benefit our entire nation, our men and women in uniform, our armed forces and all those who are touched by this legislation. i would like to add my voice to those who wish to acknowledge the magnificent work that congressman dicks has done in his years of service to our
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country, back from the time when he first worked for senator warren magnusson. we would like to wish him, his wife sue see, and their beautiful family many healthy and productive years ahead and we thank him for his service, all the dutiful, always enlightened. when he walks from these halls officially, he takes great knowledge and should take great satisfaction with him for a yb well -- for a job well done indeed. i want to extend to congressmannierry lewis as well deep appreciation from the people of our state and country for your incredible service. i would venture to say when both of you gentlemen leaf these chambers, nearly a century of knowledge will walk with you. you have left america with her strongest defense, globally, and you have been part of crafting every single line of these bills and america thanks you and the world thanks you.
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this bill has been written in a bipartisan way by our subcommittee and i thank the members for working collaboratively together. it is a model for our committee in congress on how to do the work necessary to meet the needs of the american people. the bill includes $125 million above the president's request for funding health research for traumatic brain injuries and post-traumatic stress disorder, the signature wounds of the wars in iraq and afghanistan. our bill also includes an additional $246 billion for cancer research, including breast, prostate, and ovarian cancer. during the last decade of war, our national guard and reserve units have proven themselves as a strategic reserve force for our nation. the air force in submitting their f.y. 2013 budget did not appear to appropriately appreciate the guard and reserve because they targeted
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them for cuts and cancellation. we have fixed this oversight allowing them to continue their mission which they do well, at considerably less cost an the air force does. we have a continuing order to make sure we do not end the pruck of tanks. the bill averts shutting the production lines for two years. that would have cost the american people more money than producing tanks over the same time and would dismantle the network. it also continues the military's commitment to lead our country toward energy independence. no challenge could be more vie to our national security and economic security interests. high fuel costs are an enormous burden on america's families and it is also a severe and
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wasteful burden on our service branches and diverts funds from important readiness and modernization needs. thank you for this time, god speed to you and your families in the years ahead. thank you, congressman lewis, to you and your wife arlene, many wonderful years ahead, thank you, chairman young, for bringing a chairman that brings this congress together at the subcommittee level and chairman rogers at the full committee level for working with all our members to meet the needs of our nation and our nation's defense. i yield become my remaining time. -- i yelled back my remaining time -- yield back my remaining time. the chair: the gentlelady yields back. who seeks recognition? mr. young: i yield four minutes to mr. fre ling hughesen, an extremely -- from free ling -- from frelinghuysen an extremely
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important member of the subcommittee. mr. frelinghuysen: in preparation for this debate, the subcommittee held a lengthy series of hearings examining such issues as the operations in afghanistan, the so-called pivot to the asia pacific region, army modernization, navy shipbuilding, marine strength and the air force restructuring proposals. most of these relate to mitigating risk in the defense budget and what's called the new strategic guidance from the department of defense. what i characterize as protecting our gains in the mideast and elsewhere. as well as preparing for future and current threats. china's growing military capacity, instability in the korean peninsula, the civil war in syria, iran's plan to close the straits of hormuz and others. as you'll hear in this debate, the committee weighed in with
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its own options. as the chairman says, we pause the air force restructuring decision. in light of the tyranny that characterized the asia-pacific region, we bolster the navy's shipbuilding accounts and add back in a virginia class submarine and a destroyer. our goal here and throughout the bill was to provide the resources to support our war fighters now and in the future whenever the next crisis arises. what we clearly reck niced, the nation's debt and deficit and found areas and programs where reductions were possible without adversely impacting our armed forces in modernization and readiness efforts, exezz -- exercising our man tates for sound budgeting, we restructured. the chief statings were favorable contract price adjustments, such as multiyear
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procurements of complicated weapons systems, cutting unjustified cost increases or funding ahead of need and took surplus from prior year funds. it's important that we find savings without harming readiness or increetsing the risk in current biowar -- risk incurred by war fighters. this provides the necessary resources to continue the nation's vital military efforts abroad. in addition the bill prvidse essential funding for health quality of life programs for our men and women in uniform, all volunteers and their families. i want to thank chairman young, mr. dicks, the ranking member, chairman rogers and all the member os they have subcommittee for their work and the excellent staff we have and our past leadership and continued leadership from congressman jerry lewis from california. we're all able to work together
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in a bipartisan manner to ensure that our men and women in union form, all volunteers and their families, have the support they need. the years ahead will be challenging but our defense bill will meet those needs and i'm pleased to yield back the balance of my time the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. who seeks recognition? the gentleman from washington. mr. dicks: i yield three minutes to the distinguished gentleman from massachusetts, mr. markey, he and i have -- were in the same classing to and have enjoyed many spirited debates on national security issues. and i -- i consider him to be a good friend and someone who cares a great deal about these issues. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. markey: i thank the gentleman. the chair: for four minutes. mr. markey: we started, mr. dicks and i, 36 years ago. at the height of the cold war. with each country building more and more nuclear weapons, more
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and more defense systems, in an ever-escalating war of nerves that kept both countries and the whole world on edge. but in this republican fantasy land, gold-plated nuclear weapons systems budget, there are going to be program that was long outlived their usefulness that are lavished with canyons filled with cash. in this fantasyland, the cold war never ended. the soviet me nass lives on, making it necessary to maintain vast stockpiles of nuclear weapons and build new bombers to penetrate the iron curtain this fantasyland -- in this fantasyland, there are mountains of money for intercontinental ballistic missiles, providing shade and comfort to the legions of
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defense contractors, making nuclear weapons we no longer need and can no longer afford. in this fantasy land, the republicans want to retroactively refight the cold war that we won. this makes no sense. mr. speaker, it is time to get real. sequestration is coming. the republicans in their budget are ignoring the doomsday clock that has nearly reached midnight for millions of hardworking merps. we must prepare for this reality. the bill the republicans have brought to the floor today provides the pentagon with $1 billion more than this year's spending level and $3 billion more than the obama administration requested. despite sequestration, despite budget pressures, despite the fragility of the economy, the republicans still want to increase defense spending.
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and why? well, to pay for more radioactive relics of the past nano-- that no longer are needed in order to protect our country. i have good news for my friends on the other side of the aisle. the cold war ended more than 20 years ago. the soviet union crumbled. it's ok to stop funding nuclear weapons to perpetuate a cold war rivalry that has disappeared into the mists of history. we don't have to buy into this insanity. that is why i plan to offer several sane amendments to reduce pentagon spending on unnecessary, outdated nuclear weapons programs. now here's the bottom line. gipping in january 1 of next year, five months from now, $55 billion has to be cut out of the defense budget and $55 billion has to be cut out of civilian programs. social programs. $55 billion and $55 billion, apiece. the republicans are increasing
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defense spending heading into that. moreover, they're saying, don't cut defense at all, cut the social programs. well what does that mean? that means cutting the n.i.h. cutting c.d.c. cutting the national cancer institute. their already going to be cut under sequestration. what the republicans are proposing is to really create a true doomsday machine. that doomday machine is a lack of cure for alzheimer's, for parkinsons, for all the other diseases which actually do pose a terrorist threat to families across the country when they get the call that once more that disease has come through their family because we, that is the republicans, have decided that they're going to continue to cut the research for the cures for disease and instead build more nuclear weapons to be aimed at targets that no longer exist. so this is an important debate
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to have. it's a sequestration anticipation debate. where we begin to be forced to get real. we have to have a debate about what the priorities in the 21st century are going to be and not some doctor strangelove smiling from his grave, being so happy that we're still debating additional nuclear weapons. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. who seeks recognition? mr. young: i yield myself one minute. i want to say, we understand the importance of sequestration and we have got to stop sequestration. it is just not good, especially for our national defense. this congress this committee, has not ignored the issue. last year, last year alone, this committee recommended a bill that reduced fiscal year 2010, fiscal year 2013, a total of $39 billion.
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but we did it carefully. we did it by not just going a-- across the board, cutting muscle out of our national defense. we took money that wasn't going to be spent anyway system of we understand the importance of meeting the deadlines on fundamental reductions. we don't want sequestration. it is not good for the military. it is not good for the country. it is not good for the economy. on that, i would like to yield three minutes to mr. crenshaw who is one of our subcommittee chairmen on appropriations. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. crenshaw: thank you, mr. chairman, for yielding. i rise in strong support of this legislation. let me first say thank you to the chairman, chairman young, congressman dicks, the ranking member, thank you not only for your leadership in bringing this bill to the floor but thank you for your spirit of cooperation, your spirit of
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bipartisanship, which has pervaded our subcommittee and as we bring this before the full house, i think there's great agreement among those who serve on the subcommittee. when you think that national security is probably the number one responsibility of the federal government, the only way to keep america safe is to keep america strong, and i think this bill does that. now, you'll hear people say -- you just heard people say, why do we need to spend so much money on defense? the cold war is over. we're pulling out of afghanistan. we're no longer going to be in iraq. why don't we just kind of pay a peace dividend? well, as congressman -- chairman young just pointed out, we are in the midst of a program where we are reducing spending on national defense. we looked at every agency of federal government and said, you got to do more with less. you got to tighten your belt. and the defense department is
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no different. we are going to be spending over $400 billion over a few years and then we are facing sequestration. it is the number one responsibility. we ask in our troops, ask in our military to do things. we certainly have the best trained and the best equipped military in the history of this world, but you look at our navy, for instance. we have half as many ships that we had 30 years ago. half as many, and yet we're asking them to do so many things. sure, the ships are more technologically advanced. sure, we have better trained people. stop and think about it. when you ask the navy to go and interdict drug runners in the caribbean and say, chase the pirates off the coast of somalia and send the carrier into the mediterranean, guard the straits of hormuzz, when iran -- hormu glmbings when
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iran rattles its saber, by the way, keep an eye on the pacific rim, because that's where china is flexing its muscle, remember, numbers matter. we still haven't solved, how do you have more than one ship in two places at one time. it's important to continue to provide the resources we need to have a strong national defense. i think this bill does that. i think we should all support this and i yield back my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back. who seeks recognition? mr. dicks: i reserve the balance of my time and we have no further speakers. if the gentleman from florida wants to -- the chair: the gentleman from florida. mr. young: mr. chairman, i yield two minutes to the gentleman from oklahoma, mr.
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cole. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. cole: they have worked together extraordinarily well and a way that makes us all proud. mr. dicks, i am going to miss you greatly. you have been a mentor and friend. thank goodness mr. young will still be here. i will have somebody's knee to learn at. this is a good bill. as been mentioned earlier, it adds roughly $1 billion from roughly $515 billion in the base defense bill. what hasn't been mentioned, though, it -- our overseas contingency fund, $88.5 billion, it's down $27 billion. we are spending less overall on defense this year. we reduce the number of personle by over 21,000. those of our friends who think we're spending too much, we're at the beginning of a long drawdown. over five years we are going to reduce spending by $500 billion.
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that means less capability. that means 70,000 fewer soldiers, 0,000 fewer marines. that means 25 fewer combat vessels, 288 instead of 313. seven fewer aircraft fighter wings. real reduction in capability. a lot of our friends think we spend too much on defense. the reality is we spend less and less as a percentage of our federal budget and our overall wealth. in the 1970's we were spending 40%-plus of the federal budget. this year barely 4%. for those that think this investment hasn't made a difference, i'd just recommend in closing, please read "the world america's made" and think how much freedom and security we have enjoyed for a relatively small price and think about the risk we've -- we'll run into if we reduce too
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much too fast. i want to thank the chairman and ranking member for making sure that didn't happen and make sure sequestration doesn't occur. as he rightly points out, it would be devastating. we should pass this bill and then we should get about the longer term challenge of making sure sequestration does not occur. with that i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. who seeks recognition? the gentleman from florida. mr. young: i yield two minutes to the gentleman from nebraska, mr. fortenberry. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. fortenberry: i want to thank the gentleman for the time and for your leadership on this critical important bill. on the push and pull and give and take on the congressional appropriations process, we have had many important debates on the proper role of the federal government in society, but despite our differences and competing priorities, it is clear that americans believe in a federal government that
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provides a strong common defense as a priority. american military leadership is important for our own security but also for global stability and global human rights. it is also important for my home state of nebraska. over the past 10 years, mr. speaker, 15,000 nebraskans in uniform have served overseas. today 17,000 men and women stationed in nebraska work tirelessly to strengthen our national security. american troops are steadfast, selfless and undeterred in their service and deserve our unwavering support. this bill, i believe, reflects responsibly the challenges of our times. further amendments may actually strengthen the bill creatively in balance with our fiscal responsibility obligations, but moving forward with our primary obligation to govern in defense of our nation should be our guiding principle here. let me add, mr. speaker, that i learned in this debate that this is mr. dicks' retiring
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session, and i also want to add my thanks for your many years of good service. mr. young, i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. who seeks recognition? mr. young: mr. chairman, i'd like to inquire of the gentleman if he has further speakers on the general debate. mr. dicks: i have no further speakers. is the chairman going to close or is -- mr. young: yes. mr. dicks: i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the chair recognizes the gentleman from florida. mr. young: mr. chairman, i yield myself the balance of the time. before i yield back, i want to take a minute to thank the staff who have worked tirelessly on this bill. mr. dicks mentioned them earlier on. we have the responsibility to appropriate for the authorization of the intelligence committee and for the authorization legislation of the armed services committee
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. you can imagine that that is quite a responsibility. the staff was extremely important because our staff is limited in size to the combined number of staff on those two committees that we do appropriate for. but i want to call special attention to, for example, the minority staff who worked directly with mr. dicks, paul and vicky. paul actually wrote the net capacity for the majority staff when we were the majority. in fact, when i was chairman of the appropriations committee, i had paul, so you can see this is a very nonpolitical subcommittee. brook on the majority staff. walter, tom who is the chief clerk of the majority staff. jennifer miller. tim prince. adrian ramsey.
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annries. megan rosenbush, paul terry, b.g. wright and they are quite a team and they are able to analyze the budget requests, the budget justifications and keep the membership advised. so i want to thank them very much for the good work that they do. mr. chairman, we are prepared to yield back our time and move on to the five-minute rule for amendments. so i do yield back my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back his time. all time for general debate has expired. pursuant to the rule, the bill shall be credit for amendment under the five-minute rule. during consideration of the bill for amendment, the chair may accord priority in recognition to a member offering an amendment who has caused it to be printed in the designated place in the congressional record. those amendments will be considered as read. the clerk will read.
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the clerk: be it enacted the following sums are appropriated for fiscal year 2013. namely, title 1, military personnel. $40,730,014,000. the chair: for what purpose does the gentlelady from minnesota seek recognition? the clerk: amendment number 4 printed mountain congressional record offered by ms. mccollum of minnesota. the chair: the gentlelady is recognized for five minutes. ms. mccollum: thank you, mr. chair. before i do my prepared remarks, i would very much like to thank both chairman rogers and chairman yuck for their courtesies -- young for their courtesies and the help their staff have given me being on the appropriation committee.
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mr. dicks, i would especially like to thank you for being a mentor and a guide star through this, not only on the defense appropriations bill, but in the interior bill and just in general to working on health care. thank you so, so very much. over the past four years, the department of defense has spent a stunning $1.55 billion on military bands, musical performance and concert tours around the world. that's right. $1.55 billion in taxpayer funds for four years for military bands. this amendment reduces the pentagon spending for military bands and musical performances from the $388 million in this bill to $2 million for fiscal year 2013. the $188 million reduction is to the transfer to the deficit reduction act.
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in the nada, h.r. 4310, the house included language to limit the authorization for military musical units not to exceed $200 million. this amendment conforms with the defense authorization while cutting spending by $188 million. our nation is in a fiscal crisis. the pentagon is on pace to spend $4 billion over the next decade on military bands. is the united states really going to borrow money from china and other foreign countries so the defense department can spend billions of dollars for 140 bands and more than 5,000 full-time professional musicians? how does this enhance our national security? congress has a duty to provide the necessary resources for our armed forces and to ensure our national defense. we also have an obligation to ensure that every dollar in this bill is strengthening our national security. spending $388 million of
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taxpayer money on military music does not make our nation more secure. it is a luxury, and the pentagon and the taxpayers could just no longer afford it. before he retired last year, former defense secretary robert gates said, and i quote, we must come to the realization that not every defense program is necessary, not every defense dollar is sacred and well spent and that more of everything is simply not sustainable. mr. chairman, the defense dollars i want to cut the military musical units is not necessary. it is not sacred, and it is not well spent with so many other pressing needs. in this fiscal environment, it is simply not sustainable. i don't think anyone here today will tell the american people that there is no waste or access in the pentagon budget. this congress should be protecting waste and excess in the pentagon. it should not protect it. it should cut it.
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there's a lot of talk, mostly from our republican colleagues about protecting the defense budget from the sequester and protecting millionaires and billionaires from expiring tax cuts. protecting every single defense dollar means shifting the burden and the pains for millions of budget cuts from local communities, seniors, the vulnerable and children. mr. chair -- mr. chairman, i was going to ask for order but it resolved. is this congress really going to kick kids off the school lunch program and make cuts to our responders in order to justifying for paying for more military music? well, that would not be my choice. that is not the legacy i want to leave behind as a policymaker. it does nothing, nothing to impact military readiness, mission strength or our troops'
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ability to defend our nation. i urge my colleagues to support the mccollum amendment, and i urge my colleagues to cut unnecessary funding for military bands. i yield back. the chair: the gentlelady yields back. >> i rise in opposition to the amendment. the chair: the gentleman is reck nighed for five minutes. mr. young: i'm reluctant to do that because i had the privilege of working with ms. mccollum on another committee, and on the subcommittee. she's always very sincere and generous in the way she treats the issues he's working with. but i don't think we want to eliminate military bands. first, i must tell you that those who play in the band are trained as basic combat troops. and they are called upon in a time of emergency, they are called upon to provide security for a military headquarters,
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wherever it may be located. i don't think that we want to do away with that capability. now, 91% of the money that duos -- that goes to military bands is for pay, to pay the members and their basic pay, their allowances, uniforms, foods, and i don't think we want to do that. now, our military bands play for the president, play for military functions, but many communities in our country are constantly inviting military bands to come and play patriotic programs in our hometowns. and this is good for our community. this lets us be part of our military. this doesn't put our military in a barracks someplace and keep them isolated from the general population. i think the military should be part of our general population.
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i just believe that this is not a good idea. 91% of this money will come out of the military personnel account which pays for very important things like salaries, military expenses of feeding of, caring for military personnel and why should we put our military off, isolated if the community? they should be part of our community. it's an all-volunteer force and this country needs a good shot of patriot -- ta patriotism because we've had too much negtism coming -- negativism coming at us. this is a positive country. s that patriotic country. excuse me. and we have to allow our military to show off their talents not only on the
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battlefield where they risk their lives, lose their lives, or terribly -- or are terribly injured. i rise in opposition to this amendment. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentlelady from minnesota. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. the amendment is not agreed to. the gentlelady from minnesota. ms. mccollum: i request a recorded vote. the chair: a request for recorded vote, pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the squealt from minnesota will be postponed. >> ski permission to revise and extend for five minutes. the chair: the gentleman from california moves to strike the last word? the gentleman is recognized.
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>> mr. speaker, i rise in support of the 2013 defense appropriation bill. i want to thank my chairman and friend, chairman young, and my friend, the ranking member dicks for their hard work and staff, both the majority and minority, for extremely thoughtful and balanced bill. in crafting this bill, the defense appropriations subcommittee held countless hearings, ensuring that strong congressional oversight was alive and well. it's been an honor to serve on the defense appropriations subcommittee and i can attest to the hard work that's gone into this bill. our nation's first priority is protection of our citizens and our national interests around the world this bill fulfills that duty. the f.y. 2013 defense bill also fulfills a promise to our service members that they'll continue to receive the best train, equipment, and health care. likewise it fulfills the needed requirements to ensure our commanders have the tools they need to accomplish u.s. missions around the world and
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support america's defense and our industrial base. i understand that many members may have objections to the overall funding level of the defense bill and there's no doubt that every aspect of government, including defense, must come under close fiscal scrutiny. however, the short-term ben fis of decimating defense will only leave us more economically precarious in the future. this bill properly balanced the need to make responsible cuts while ensuring that america maintains its military superiority. on a personal basis, i want to thank some friends that are leaving the committee, jerry lewis and jorm dicks, for their -- and norm dicks, for their many years of service. we're going to miss their service here in this institution. i thank you for all your hard work and lastly, i urge my colleagues to vote in favor of this bill and i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields
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back. for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts rise? >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman moves to strike the last word, the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> mr. chairman, sometimes it's easy to forget that we are deep in war in afghanistan. the nightmare of mass murder in syria, garners the attention of the news media, but we have more than 90,000 troops on the ground in afghanistan and about 100,000 contractors. mr. mcgovern: some of these troops are slated to come other -- come home over the summer but many more will remain. and the exact number of troops that will remain in afghanistan as the u.s. and allies transition to local security forces through 2013 and 2014 is still unclear. these are -- neither the
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pentagon nor the administration has publicly laid out post-2014 plans but they are clearly leaving open the possibility of a significant military presence. this is the reality we face as we open debate on this bill. mr. chairman, i am not convinced that there is any light at the end of the tunnel. i am not convinced that this war is coming to an end. i do not believe we should continue sack fitesing the dedication and blood of our servicemen and women for deeply flawed and corrupt government that is not fixable. we can change the names and the programs and the projects, but it's simply more of the same problems over and over and over again. this is regrettable that this war is not more of a priority in public debate and it is unconscionable that debating this war is not a top priority for the congress. the majority wouldn't even let us have a full debate and vote on the amendment in the defense authorizations bill to make sure the commitments made by the administration to draw down
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our troops over the next two years are kept. congress is deeply complicit in maintaining and continuing this war. with an allocated $630 billion for military operations in afghanistan since 2001, including the $85.6 billion in this bill. we're not just spending those billions, mr. chairman. we're borrowing them. every single penny for the war in afghanistan has been borrowed, put on the national credit card, exploding our deficit and debt. every single penny. each week of the war in 2012 costs about $2 billion. if the pentagon's enduring presence means thousands of troops remaining in afghanistan for who knows how long, we are looking at a $1 trillion war. we are looking at schools slashing funds from the safety to -- we're underfunding
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schools, cutting the safety net to protect people from poverty, our infrastructure continues to decay and there's no money to invest in research. and for what? the violence in afghanistan goes on. the u.s. death toll for operation enduring free dm is over 2,000. members of the afghan security forces continue to turn their guns on our troops and murder them. according to the pentagon, 154 active duty soldiers committed suicide in the first 159 days of this year. that's almost one per day. and as for our veterans, the v.a. estimates that a veteran dies by suicide every 80 minutes. how long will we ask our troops and their families to pay this price? because they're the only ones paying for this war, mr. chairman. the only ones.
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and i don't believe we should abandon the people of afghanistan but i do believe we must end this war sooner rather than later. and i'm not convinced we're anywhere close to an end. an it's the fault of congress -- and it's the fault of congress. we approve the money and we remain silent year after year after year. we need to stop. we aren't supporting our troop, we are committing them to suffer life-long trauma from too many deployments, over too long a time, for too many years, for a war without end, for a war that always needs just a little more time and just a few billion dollars more. enough is enough. i urge my colleagues to support amendments over the next three days to reduce the funding for this war, bring it to an end and honor the sacrifice of our troops by bringing them and our tax dollars back home. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from north carolina rise? >> mr. chairman, thank you. i rise to strike the last word.
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the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. jones: i join my friend from massachusetts and anybody else who says it's time to bring our troops home from afghanistan. i want to thank chairman young and ranking member dicks for an excellent bill, i agree with 80% of it, but i cannot continue to support legislation that sends billions and billions of dollars to afghanistan. i have a book here in my hand called "funding the enemy." called "funding the enemy: how u.s. taxpayers bankroll the taliban." one critique on the back of this book, from state department officer peter van buren, i quote, sober, sad and important, "funding the enemy" peels back the layers of engagement in afghanistan to reveal its rotten core and that the united states dollar, meant for the country's future,
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instead funds the insurgents and supports the taliban, paying for bolt sides of the war ensures america's ultimate defeat. mr. speaker, the reason i'm here today is because i have camp lejeune marine base in my district. i have signed over 10,474 letters to families who have lost loved ones since we were lied to to go into iraq. while we will continue to support karzai, i saw where vice president cheney was on the hill yesterday, i've seen my colleagues today talking about sequestration. and you see mr. karzai here, why should he be here? he's got his money in this bill. he doesn't have to worry about sequestration. he just ha has to take care of his corrupt government in afghanistan. it is time, mr. speaker, it is time that the congress listen to 72% of the american people who say, bring our troops home
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now, not later. and i join my friend from massachusetts, my concern about cutting programs for children who need milk in the morning, senior citizens who need sandwiches in the afternoon. we're going to cut their money but still continue to support the taliban who are killing american kids in afghanistan because we have no accountability where this $88 billion is going. it is time for this congress to come together and say yes, we will support our military, but we will not support a corrupt government who is not going to survive anyway. the enemy, the taliban will take over afghanistan when it's all said and done. please, america, bring pressure on the congress to bring our troops home from after depan stan and i yield back the balance of my time. god help our men and women in uniform. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. who seeks recognition? >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentlelady moves to strike the last word.
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the gentlelady from california is recognized for five minutes. ms. woolsey: thank you, mr. chairman. we'll be spending the next several days debating the department of defense budget. a whopping $519.2 billion. by anyone's account that's a lot of money. what we won't be debating is the future of our presence in afghanistan. you'd think a congress obsessed with the deficit and cutbacks would take a look at the costliest item on our book the war in afghanistan. no debate on that. instead, a few of us coming to the well to take a handful of five-minute slots. this is what war has cost our nation in blood and treasure in ways we may never be able to add up. and what are those costs? as of today we've spent $548 billion on the war.
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that's $10 billion a month. actually, it's more than this year's d.o.d. budget. this year we face the 2,000th death in operation enduring freedom. more than 15,000 of our brave men and women in uniform have returned home wounded. every day we lose one more service member to suicide. and the afghan people, how many of them have died and have been wounded? so the other side of the aisle wants to talk about cost. well, let's do that. what has this misguided war cost us in international standing? is the u.s. more popular in the middle east than central asia? no. are we any safer? probably not. as a new generation of afghan
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children grow up in an occupied country, aren't they learning to hate the west? yes. and what's the cost here at home? how many cops could we have put on the beat? how many homes could have been saved from foreclosure? how many farmers could get drought relief? how many small business jobs could have been created? how many more patients could we have cared for at our veterans' hospitals? we'll never know because instead of having an honest and open debate about hour spending priorities, we have to grab five minutes here and five minutes there. that's not what the american people want. they want transparency. they want more debate. further than that, they want this war to be over. they want our troops to come home. so, yes, by all means, let's talk about cost, but let's not squeeze it in among $500
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billion of weapons, planes and the rest of the military industrial complex. i urge the house leadership to have a real debate on the war in afghanistan. and let's shine some light on how much it costs. i yield back. the chair: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. who seeks recognition? the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas, for what purpose? >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman moves to strike the last word. the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. paul: i thank you, mr. chairman. i rise to talk a little bit about the appropriations that are going on and in particular the appropriations for the very, very long war in afghanistan. nobody knows when it's going to end. there's always a pretense, there's always a thought, tomorrow's going to be a better day. i was in the military in the 1960's, and there was always this promise we're just around
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the turn and we are going to have peace and prosperity and have perfect results. well, so far we don't have -- we have not had any perfect results in afghanistan. there's a lot of unknown, and here we are appropriating even more money to continue this war. when you talk about war power and the resolution on how we go to war, it becomes very complex. today it was originally intended to be very simple. he went to war when there was a declaration and the people through their congressmen voted up or down. today we slip and slide and we fall into these traps and we go to war under the u.n. banner and nato and we never know why we go to war and what the goals are and when the war's over and they persist. but there's one analysis made which bothers me a bit and that is even if there isn't a declaration of war, if some of our -- some of the members come along, as we have been for quite a few years, and say, you
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know, the congress never declared war. the argument they make is, as long as you fund the war, you're giving its -- you give credibility and therefore you indirectly support the war. of course, the argument is not so much on how we go to war but if we get into war, the whole thing is you can't vote against any money. you don't care about the troops. you're un-american. you don't do that. and that carries the weight of the argument and people get -- shy away and say, no, i don't like the car. i can't go against the troops. well, i've had little experience traveling the country and talking about issues like this and looking for support of a position which is quite a bit different than what we have followed here recently. and let me tell you, guess what, the troops give me strong support. they gave me a lot of support. it was huge. and for them to -- for anybody
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to argue that you don't want to send troops carelessly into no-win wars, to think you're against the troops is nonsense. when i was in the military, i was still in in 1965, and that's when the escalation came in vietnam. the last thing i wanted was, i want somebody in there that wants to expand the war. why don't we go into cambodia and laos? people joined the guard -- i was in the guard unit as well as active duty. people joined the guard and reserves because they wanted to defend our country. they didn't want to take six trips to the middle east and endlessly see what's happening. and i get stories all the time about, you know, their buddies being killed, loss of limbs. and, you know, then they say, well, we're fighting for freedom. how is -- think about it seriously. how in the world is going over there and fighting in either
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iraq or afghanistan have anything to do with -- we're fighting to defend our constitution. well, we never had a constitutional declaration of war. so that's all a facade and that's all to make people feel guilty that if you don't keep the war going, in vietnam it was we have to win, we have to win, so we lose 60,000 troops. what does that mean? you know, after mcnamara wrote his memoirs and was a bit apologetic about it. does that mean you're apologizing for the kind of war you're in in vietnam? he said, no. what good is an apology if you don't change policy? and that is the thing. if this is not doing well and not doing right, just to say either you're sorry or you have to have victory and pretend there's a victory around the corner i think we're fooling ourselves. we live within the constitution, live within our means, believe me, we would not
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be in afghanistan. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentlelady from california seek recognition? >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: and the gentlelady from illinois is recognized for five minutes. ms. schakowsky: thank you, madam chairman. i rise today to join my colleagues in calling for an end to the war in afghanistan and the removal of u.s. troops and security contractors. we face real and ongoing challenges from terrorist groups around the world. but after 10 years of fighting, it is clear that ongoing military presence in afghanistan is simply not the answer. the over $630 billion we've spent on this war in the past 10 years have not brought us security and we cannot bring stability to afghanistan through an ongoing troop presence. i support the president's efforts to begin the withdrawal of u.s. troops, and i applaud him for starting that important process.
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yet, we need in my opinion to act faster to end the war. we need an accelerated timetable for troop withdral and a plan to ensure -- withdrawal and a plan to ensure all u.s. forces are deployed. madam chairman, over 2,000 americans have given their lives in afghanistan in service of their country. that includes almost 1,500 since january, 2009, and estimated 400 since the death of osama bin laden. another 12,000 have been wounded and perhaps most staggering, more soldiers have committed suicide than have died in combat in afghanistan. our troops bear devastating psychological wounds of war. it has placed a devastating strain on our military, our troops and their families. we've asked more and more from them with many soldiers still serving multiple dangerous deployments, taking them away
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from their homes and their families for long period of times. the suicide rate again is a stark reminder that we're not meeting our obligations to these men and women. madam chairman, keeping our troops in afghanistan comes at great cost to us. not only does it cost some $8 billion a month, but it continues to cost american lives. it is time for us to end this war. instead of more boots on the ground, we need to redirect funding toward diplomatic and economic engagement with the afghan people. we need to invest in afghan women, ensuring that they have basic human rights protections as well as educational and economic opportunities. because afghanistan will never be stable and prosperous if half of its population is oppressed. the bottom line is this -- hundreds of billions of dollars and over 2,000 americans lives have not brought us security.
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keeping our troops in afghanistan will not end the threat of terrorism nor will it bring stability to the afghan people. we need a new strategy, shifting from military force to true engagement. madam chairman, we are fighting a war that has no military solution. in fact, far from making us safer, our ongoing troop presence actually fuels the insurgency and breaths anti-american sentiment. instead of pouring another $88 billion into continuing this war for another year, i strongly believe we need to end funding for military engagement in afghanistan and finally bring our troops home. thank you and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from illinois yields back her time. -- the chair: the gentlelady from illinois yields back her time. for what purpose does the gentleman rise? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. mr. mulvaney of south
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carolina. after the dollar amount, insert increased by $4,359,624,000. page 3, line 20, after the dollar amount, insert increased by $1,197,682,000. page 121, line 12, after the dollar amount insert reduced by $4,359,624,000. page 122, line 3, after the dollar amount insert reduced by $1,197,682,000. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from florida seek recognition? mr. young: the amendment is subject to pired but i am going to reserve the point of order to allow the gentleman to have his five minutes to explain what it is he wants to do. the chair: the gentleman from florida reserves a point of order. the gentleman from south carolina. mr. mulvaney: thank you, madam chair. i thank the chairman and also the ranking member for the opportunity to present this amendment. madam chair, the amendment is
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something different for me. it is not an amendment to reduce spending and it's not an amendment to increase spending. in fact, this is outlay neutral. similarly, consistent with what the chairman and the ranking member discussed when introducing the bill, this amendment is not a partisan amendment. i do not seek to lay blame on either party or on the president or the congress for the circumstance which we find ourselves. this amendment regards simply a policy, a policy that traditionally has had bipartisan support in this house and that policy is that we keep separate spending on the base defense budget and spending on the overseas contingency operations or the war budget. it has come to our attention and both the c.b.o. and the g.a.o. have confirmed that there are $5.8 -- excuse me -- $5.6 billion in the overseas contingency operation budget, in the war budget, that should
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be in the base budget. we have taken things such as the base salaries for men and women in uniform who are not deployed and are charging that spending this year to the war budget. madam chair, since 9/11, we have had a policy in this house of keeping those two items separate so that we know the real cost of the war against terror. we have taken the base defense spending and accounted for it in one fashion and the war budget in an entirely different system. this time for the first year, madam chair, we are blending those numbers. we take $5.6 billion of what should be in the base budget and move it to the other budget. madam chair, the committee itself recognizes it is not good policy. if you look at the bill, you will see that the committee itself says, let's make sure not to do this next year and the year after that and the year after that. and indeed we have not done it since 9/11. but we do it this year.
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this year only in this particular bill, and i think it's important that we continue to abide by the policy that accounts correctly for the cost of the war overseas. so madam chair, what i say to you this amendment is not about spending more money. it's not about spending less money. it's about accounting accurately for the spending that we do so that we can tell folks back home exactly what we spend on the base defense of this nation and what we spend in the wars overseas. and for that reason, madam chair, i would ask for an aye vote on this particular amendment and i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman may not reserve. the gentleman yields back his time. the gentleman from florida. >> i make a point of order against the amendment because it is in violation of section 302-f of the congressional budget act of 1974. the committee on appropriations filed a suballocation of budget
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totals for fiscal year 2013 on may 22, 2012. mr. young: h. report 172489, the adoption of this amendment would cause the subcommittee general purpose suballocation for budget authority made under section 302-b, to be exceeded, and is not permitted under section 302-f of the act and i ask for a ruling from the chair. the chair: does any member wish to be heard on the point of order? the gentleman from south carolina. >> thank you, madam chair. it is true a new point of order was created under the budget and control act, preventing any legislation from being considered in the house that would cause discretionary spending to exceed the caps established in the budget and control act. under that part of the act, madam chair, the entire bill is technically out of order. mr. mulvaney: because the entire bill exceeds the b.c.a. caps by $7.5 billion. ironically then, if this point of order is sustained then we
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will effectively keep within the shadows of nonpartisan policy, something everyone has supported in the past, a good governance issue, while allowing the entire bill, which also violates the same point of order, to proceed. my amendment is outlays neutral. it does not increase spending, it does not decrease spending. it simply moves spending from the war budget to the base budget and vice versa. it does -- if the amendment were agreed to the budget authority in the bill will be exactly the same as it is if the amendment fails. $608 billion, $213 million. accordingly the amendment does not violate section 3202-f-1 of the congressional budget act and overruling the point of order gives us the chance to abide by the precedent established long ago and embraced by both parties and i respectfully ask that the chair overrule the point of order. thank you, madam chair. the chair: any other member wish to speak to the point of order? if not the chair is prepared to
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rule. under house cost concurrent resolution 112, has made -- as made applicable by house resolution 614, the subcommittee on defense has both a general purposes aimcation and an overseas contingency allocation. the accounts on the bill on pages 2 and 3 are under the general purposes allocation. the accounts on pages 121 and 122 are under the overseas contingency operations allocation. the amendment transfers funds from the latter to the former. the chair is guided under section 312 of the budget act and clause 4 of rule 29 by an estimate of the chair of the committee on the budget that an amendment providing any net increase in new discretionary budget authority in either allocation would cause a breach of that allocation. the amendment offered by the gentleman from south carolina would increase a level of new discretionary budget authority in the bill under the general purposes allocation. as such the amendment violates section 302-f of the budget act and the point of order is sustained and the amendment is
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not in order. for what purpose does the gentleman from vermont seek recognition? and the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. welch: i thank the speaker. madam speaker, the war in afghanistan had a legitimate purpose when it began. that was the grounds from which osama bin laden engineered the attack on the world trade center. congress supported going into afghanistan to take out osama bin laden and to deny a safe haven to terrorists. at a certain point the policy transformed from an effort to protect us against a base of operations into a nation-building mission. that was a grave mistake. adopting nation building will be seen through the lens of history as about as effective as trench warfare in world war i.
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our military will do whatever's asked of them. our job is to make requests of them that are reasonable for them to do. it is not the job of the men and women who serve in the u.s. military to build nation states in afghanistan. that policy was failed militarily, that policy is unsustainable economically, that policy does not make us more secure. why? number one, as i said, it's not the job of the military to build nation states. it's the job of the military when they do very well to defend america from attack. number two, if you're attempting to do a nation building strategy, you need an ally that's going to be a partner with you. the karzai government is corrupt. it is infected with corruption. it has exceeded our wildest and
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most pessimistic expectations of what corruption can be. we do not have a reliable partner. so the question becomes, at what point do we step back, when we have the responsibility to settle policy that protects this nation, to set a policy that rments our taxpayer, that has a policy that acknowledges the willingness of men and women to serve but accepts our burden of giving them a policy that's worthy of their unrelenting ability and willingness to sacrifice. as we know the american people believe it's time to come home from afghanistan. they understand it. the president of the united states has said that we will bring our troops home by the end of 2014. so the policies have been changed. the war in afghanistan in fact
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is over. the question for congress is will we end it? we're giving it ever more money for a policy we know doesn't work. we know the karzai government is incapable and unwilling to be an honest partner. we know that nation building as a strategy cannot succeed. we know that the threat of terrorism as persistent as it is is not a nation-state-centered threat. it's dispersed and our military response to that has likewise become dispersed. so why are we pursuing this policy when we have renounced it? acknowledged that it's failed? the american people don't support it. it's inertia. it's the unwillingness of congress to take a definitive action where our policy should make our deeds. we're bringing our troops home, we should have as a policy that we bring those troops ho as
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quickly, as quickly as we responsibly can. madam chair, i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will read. the clerk: page 2, line 23. the chair: the gentleman from california is advised that the reading has no prosecute pro-gressed to his section -- has not progressed to his section in the bill. has not progressed to that point yet. who seeks recognition? for what purpose does the gentleman from oregon seek recognition? the gentleman recognized for five minutes -- the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. blumenauer: thank you, madam chair. i deeply appreciate the
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difficult job that chairman young, ranking member dicks have . this is important legislation, difficult balancing. it is a time of strain in terms of the budget, it's a time of strain for the military. but i do think that my colleagues who come to the floor questioning whether we need to continue the same policy, the same funding, the same direction with afghanistan are right on point. this congress should be spending more time actually engaging in a debate on our policy, our practices, our future in afghanistan. we initially went to war to deal with the protection of the united states. it was in afghanistan that osama bin laden hatched the plot that
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led to the 9/11 attacks and he was protected by his taliban enablers. and it was entirely appropriate for the bush administration and this congress to go after him, to end that threat and obtain justice. sadly before the job was done in afghanistan, before osama bin laden was actually captured we veered into a tragically misguided, flawed and expensive mission in iraq. i was strongly against it, as were many of the colleagues who are joining us today on the floor. it was a mistake in terms of strategy, it was a horrible price paid by our troops, and it was dramatically unsettling. and it has limped long to an
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unsatisfactory resolution. but it wasn't until nine years later that we finally finished the job with the death of osama bin laden. and i commend the president for being in charge of that operation. but it's done. it's over. we killed osama bin laden, it is time for us to stop the longest war in american history, whether it is formally declared or not, and i strongly identify with many of the comments from my friend, ron paul, on the floor here a moment ago. it is time for the united states to stop spending more in a month in afghanistan than it would cost to hire every man and woman in afghanistan of working age. that's what we're spending.
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you could rent the country for a year for what we are spending for a month. and the resolution is going to be exactly the same, whether it's 2013, 2014, twist, whether it's another -- 2015, whether it's another 100, 1,000 american lives, whether it's $10 billion or -- 10 billion or 100 billion, it's time for to us give the military a break, to listen to the american public, to reposition and deal with the challenges at hand. madam chair, i am haunted by the notion that we have lost more men and women to suicide than we have to hostile action. there are terrible consequences for this operation that needs go on no longer. i suggest it's time to end, to save lives, to save money, to
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save the strain on our military and for this congress to get to work on things that will make a difference for international peace and security, for restarting the american economy and making our communities safer, healthier and more economically secure. and if we do our job in afghanistan, scaling it down and getting the troops out as quickly as we responsibly can, we will have taken an important step in that direction. thank you and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman from oregon yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? >> strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> thank you very much, madam chairman. mr. rohrabacher: first of all, let me note that our goal after the vision terrorist attack on the united states -- vicious terrorist attack on the united states on 9/11, our goal was to eliminate osama bin laden, and to clear afghanistan, which had
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been the stationary of the 9/11 attack, cleared of osama bin laden's allies who happen to have been the taliban. well, my fellow colleagues, osama bin laden is dead. the taliban were cleared from afghanistan years ago. so it's time for us to declare victory and bring our troops home. it is not time for us to declare that there's going to be an extension of the deployment of our troops and to leave them there to expend their lives for a cause that has already been decided. we have -- they have done their duty, we have accomplished the mission, let's have a victory parade, not an extension of deployment. why are we in this predicament, why are we even discussing $88 billion and perhaps hundreds if
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not thousands of more american lives being sacrificed halfway around the world? in some canyon somewhere where some young american loses his life or loses his legs and comes -- and americans -- and of course the expenditure of billions of dollars that we really need so much here at home, if for nothing else to help bring down this level of deficit spending. why are we even in this position now? why are we not recognizing this? well, first of all, let's just note that we have -- we are now in a situation where year after year is taking place after we have actually accomplished our goals in afghanistan, and our troops are still there losing their lives. it's almost like "the dwilet zone" episode.
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-- "the tie light zone" episode. we don't need to spend this money. we don't need to lose these lives. we just need to say we've done our job and come home. who are we watching out for? the state department ended up -- the state department ended up stealing victory -- basically stealing victory out of the jaws of defeat. we've won this years ago. years ago the taliban were cleared out of afghanistan. and now we find the situation getting worse. well, i've been in afghanistan. i fought with the mujaheddin against the soviets there. i over the years was deeply involved with afghan policy and people know that. there is no reason in the world -- the longer we stay there the more enemies we'll make for the united states. it's going to be harder for us
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to get out next year than it is for us right now. and we will have made more enemies out of those people when they see foreign troops. who cares if there is someone in a canyon far away screaming that he hates america? so what. and our guys are going out there right now and investigating situations like that and putting their lives on the line because someone heard good things about the taliban in some desloate canyon somewhere. what a waste of american lives. what a waste of our resources. and on top of it, our state department has created a system of government, we created a system of government for the afghan people and we're shoving it down their throats now, the most highly centralized and most corrupt system of any government in this world. mr. karzai is creating a cleptocracy in afghanistan. no matter how much we're trying
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to help, that money is disappearing. that money is -- we are not able to accomplish it even though the money's going out. we should recognize that we cannot, we cannot make the history for the afghan people. we will have to make it for themselves. thank you very much. we have cleared afghanistan of the taliban. we have eliminated osama bin laden. the afghan people will now have to shape their own des niece. e more of the lives of our young people in order to get the goal we want, especially what we know now that our government has alied with such a corrupt regime -- allied with such a corrupt rejackson lee. we need to get the troops as soon as -- corrupt regime.
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we need to get the troops home as soon as possible. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentlelady rise? >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentlelady is recognized for five minutes. ms. lee: first off, let me say, thank you to my colleagues, jones and mcgovern, and to all the colleagues today in calling for a real debate of the war in afghanistan which really should have occurred when it was authorized in 2001 which, of course, i could not support then knowing it was a blank check. yes, it was an overly broad resolution for war without end. as i have to thank my colleagues for calling for a safe and swift end to the war in afghanistan. we all know there is no military solution in afghanistan. earlier this summer we passed the sad mildstone of 2,000 american lives lost in afghanistan. tens of thousands suffer more from wounds, both visible and
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invisible. as we remember and honor our dead and our wounded and pray for their families and their loved ones, we also have the duty and responsibility and opportunity to act today to ensure that further losses are avoided and that we accelerate the transition to afghans ruling afghanistan. later on today i am going to introduce an amendment to this defense appropriations bill to limit funding in afghanistan to the responsible and safe withdrawal of troops. we have the power of the purse strings in this house, and for those who believe enough is enough, we should vote for this amendment. i encourage all of my colleagues to support the lee amendment which will save at least $21 billion, and most importantly, though, the lives of countless americans and afghans and quite frankly, as has been said earlier, it's time to use these tax dollars to create jobs here at home.
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it is time to rebuild america, and also to provide for the economic security of our brave troops. they have done a tremendous job. they have done everything we have asked them to do. they have carried a tremendous load over the past decade of wars in iraq and afghanistan. asking them to stay in afghanistan two more years when there is no indication that circumstances on the ground will change, this is really unconscionable. before we send our men and women in uniform into afghanistan or ask them to stay for another two years, we have an obligation to answer simple questions. what national security interest does the united states currently have in afghanistan? to what extent does united states presence in afghanistan destabilize the country by antagonizing local afghans? how critical is the overall
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effort in afghanistan compared to other priorities in our own country? earlier this year, along with my colleagues, congressman walter jones and congresswoman woolsey and mcgovern, we held a hearing on afghanistan with lieutenant colonel daniel davis. this was an ad hoc hearing, mind you, because we should have had the authority to hold that hearing in the house armed services committee or the house committee on foreign affairs but quite frankly the leadership would not let us have a formal hearing, so we had our own. we had an ad hoc hearing with this brave, outspoken whistleblower, colonel daniel davis, who risked his career to tell the truth about what he saw on the ground in afghanistan. it was a hearing that every member of congress should have heard before voting to spend tens of billions of dollars and risking the lives and limbs of tens of thousands of americans in uniform. those of you who attended the
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hearing or read the witness' testimony understand that the current strategy of propping up a corrupt regime in afghanistan will almost fail. but instead of having a full debate on the current strategy in afghanistan, instead of having a real debate about what we hope to gain with more years in afghanistan, we are limited to these brief opportunities on the floor to remind congress that the american people overwhelmingly want to bring the war in afghanistan to an end. people are war weary and they want this over. this congress has the opportunity once again to stand with seven out of 10 americans who want to bring the war in afghanistan to an end by voting yes on several of the amendments that we're going to be considering. my amendment that i will introduce later in this debate will limit the funding to the responsible and safe and orderly withdrawal of united states troops and contractors from afghanistan.
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madam chair, let me thank once again our colleagues, congressman mcgovern and jones, for gathering us here this afternoon. we have very limited opportunities, really, to reflect the majority of the american people's sentiment in terms of their wearyness of this war. it's time to -- weariness of this war. it's time to end it. the chair: the gentlelady's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentlelady from connecticut seek recognition? ms. delauro: to strike the last word. the chair: the gentlelady is recognized for five minutes. ms. delauro: this has become the longest war in the history of our republic. over 2,000 brave american women and women have perished in this conflict. because of their sacrifice and the hard work, dedication and sacrifice, al qaeda has been decimated and osama bin laden, the perpetrator of the
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september 11 attacks against americans has been brought to justice. now almost 11 years after we first arrived, it's time to bring our military involvement in afghanistan to an end. afghanistan is its own sovereign country and its citizens need to take responsibility for their destiny. we need to bring our troops home and to start reinvesting in america again. at the recent nato summit in chicago, president obama and nato leaders announced an end to combat operations in afghanistan in 2013. and a transition of lead responsibility to the afghan government by the end of 2014. these are important steps, but the president also recently signed an agreement in kabul that will keep american troops in the region until 2024. 2024. we need to bring our troops home now, not 16 years from now. this war is costing american taxpayers $130 billion a year.
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especially at a time when we are trying to cut the deficit, reduce unnecessary spending and reinvest in our own economic growth, this is far too much. the entire g.d.p. of afghanistan is $30 billion, less than a quarter of what we're spending year in and year out. the nation of afghanistan faces many tough challenges ahead, including economic development and the foundations of a civil society such as literacy, education, agriculture development and the empowerment of women. but these are not challenges but are merely military in nature. have them build their economy rather than relying on government contractors. i visited afghanistan twice over the course of this conflict and saw firsthand how our renewed attention to the region since 2009 and the counterinsurgency strategy developed by general petraeus
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has brought marked improvements in securing areas, in training security and police and establishing the rule of law and in developing local economies. perhaps most importantly, on a trip last march, i had a sense of optimism that was in afghanistan that was not there before and the afghans must son take over and govern their own nation. the time is now. for over a decade, our troops have accomplished the mission that they were given. they have performed heroically. they, including thousands of brave service members from connecticut, have been operating in one of the most inhospitable environments one can imagine. making sacrifices for their country by serving as well as losing this time with their families. it is time to bring our troops home and for the people of afghanistan to forge their own destiny. i yield back the balance of my
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time. the chair: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. who seeks time? for what purpose does the gentleman from arizona seek rick anything? >> to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. grijalva: thank you, madam chair. after 11 years, over 2,000 americans killed, 16,000 americans wounded, nearly $400 billion spent and more than 12,000 afghan civilians dead since 2007, we have to question the u.s. presence in afghanistan. should we continue america's longest war? at what cost and for how long? the american people have questioned and continues to question time and time again this question, should we be there, and the answer has always been a resounding no. it's not being used that the american public, democrat, republican and everyone else, has soured on the war.
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the national security rationale have lost its receipt sans and the economic cost is crippling our ability to recover from our own deep recession. according to "the new york times" poll, more than 2/3 of those polled, 69% thought the united states should not be at war in afghanistan. the u.s. war in afghanistan is costing the u.s. taxpayers nearly $2 billion per week, over $100 billion per year. meanwhile, in the wake of the worst economic crisis since the great depression, too many of our neighbors and friends are out of work, struggling to pay the bills and look to us for job creation and support. americans who feel this doing more with less are connecting the dots of our federal priorities and the pain they're feeling at home. americans struggling to put their kids through college without pell grants or running out of employment benefits with
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no new job on the horizon cannot ignore the cost of the war. arizona families in my district have paid nearly $777 million for the afghan war since 2001. for that same amount of money, the state of arizona could have had 336,000 children receiving low-income health care for one year, 15,000 elementary school teachers employed in our schools for one year, 93,000 head start slots for children for one year, over 100,000 military veterans receiving v.a. medical care for one year, over 10,000 police officers and law enforcement officers securing our communities and neighborhoods for one year, 113,000 scholarships for university students for one year, 139,000 receiving pell grants of $5,550. these are just some of the bad
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tradeoffs we're making by spending our national resources, both our treasure and our blood on a war instead of fixing the problems here at home. i'd like to take a brief second to thank, to honor and to commemorate those warriors from my district, district seven, for their ultimate sacrifice to our country. sergeant first class pat harris, sergeant martin lugo, sergeant justin gallegos, sergeant gonzalez, first lieutenant thompson, sergeant first class jonathan mccain, staff sergeant donald stacy, private first class adam hart. our service men and women have performed with incredible courage and commitment in afghanistan. they have done everything that has been asked of them, but the truth is they have been put at an impossible position. a war with no foreseeable end
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and a war that is costing not just them and their families but our country's ability to prosper and to move forward. it's time to say enough is enough. it's time to take a responsible -- the responsibility to end this war in afghanistan, be responsible but end it. the cost to america, the cost to our future is too enormous to continue on the path that we're on, a path that has no end. and with that i yield back. the chair: the gentleman from arizona yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from new york seek recognition? the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. speaker. mr. higgins: the appropriations process and the budget is not only a spending plan about future priorities, it's also about a statement about our values. and the united states in 2001 went into afghanistan and took out the taliban government.
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we've also taken out osama bin laden. the united states is proposing to spend $88.5 billion again this year in afghanistan. we're going into our 11th year of u.s. involvement in afghanistan. 11 years ago afghanistan was among the poorest and most corrupt countries on the face of the earth. today it is still among the most corrupt and poorest countries on the face of the earth. we've lost 2,000 american soldiers, 16,000 wounded. last week the u.s. government decided to spend $105 billion rebuilding the infrastructure of this country. less than $53 billion in each of the next two years for a nation of over 200 million people.
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you just spent $78 billion rebuilding the roads and bridges of afghanistan, a nation of 30 million people. it's time that we do nation building right here at home. of the 34 provinces in afghanistan the spiritual and financial harm of the taliban is in kandahar province. because that is disproportionately where the poppy fields are that finances the taliban. the literacy rate for women in kandahar province is 1%. the literacy rate for men is about 15%. how do you build up an afghanistan police force and afghan narm army with people who are -- army with people who are illiterate? you have to build schools, you have to build roads to get them to schools and electricity to power those schools. that, mr. speaker, is nation building. in afghanistan. we need to do nation building
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right here at home. this $88.5 billion should be directed immediately to rebuild the roads and bridges of this nation. in america, according to transportation for america, we have 69,000 structurally deficient bridges. in new york state alone we have over 2,000 structurally deficient bridges. in my home community of western new york we have 99 structurally deficient bridges and no plan to address that. every second of every day seven cars drive on a bridge that is structurally deficient. we need to get our priorities in order, we need to reaffirm our values, we need to have a vision for rebuilding america and the best way to do that is start with this appropriation and reprogramming it right back here at home for nation building here in america. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time.
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for what purpose does the gentleman from indiana seek recognition? the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. burton: you know, i support the military 100% and i think we ought to give them all the equipment and spend the funds that are necessary to make sure they're prepared to fight a war anyplace and i think we need to defeat the taliban and al qaeda and make sure that the threats to america are eliminated, at least as much as is humanly possible. but the reason i took five minutes to speak today is because -- not because i don't support the military or the appropriation for the military. but because i was shaving the other day and before i came into work, and i heard the news man talking about a young family and a gentleman, young man that was
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in the military. i came out while i was shaving and i looked at the television, it was a beautiful family, young man and a woman woman and their child, and they announced he had just been hit by an i.e.d. and lost both harms -- arms and both legs and i was thinking, what a tragedy for this young man and for his family and the horrible things they're going to have to endure throughout the rest of their lives. then i started thinking about all the technology that we have. we have satellites that can pinpoint a pack of cigarettes on the ground and we have drones that can fly over enemy territory and pick out a target and hit somebody with a missile and blow them to smithereens and somebody from 1,000 miles away sitting at a computer with a television screen can direct that drone and that missile. and i started wondering to myself, why in the world don't we use more of those instead of sending young american men and women into harm's way day in and day out like we do?
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we have the technology to knock out anybody, anyplace in the world that we want to. and so i would just like to ask this question of my colleagues. we have to have special forces, we have to go into certain spots and knock out bad guys. we've got to do that. but when we don't have to, when we know that the enemy's in a certain area, instead of spending our young men and -- sending our young men and women in there, why don't we send a drone over at a site that we discovered from a satellite and blow the hell out of those people? don't send our young men and women into that kind of a situation where they're going to lose their arms and their legs, when we've spent all this money on this technology to stop the enemy. and that's my biggest concern. why in the world don't we use that technology instead of young men and women going into harm's way when it's not necessary? i understand war is important. i know we have to defeat the taliban and those who would take away our freedoms. it's extremely important and we should support the military.
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every way we can. give them all the tools that are necessary. but let's use the tools that we have to stop the enemy as much as possible without putting young men and women in that situation. i don't want to turn on the television next week or next month and see more young mental and women who have suffered this way -- young men and women who have suffered this way. i've been out to bethesda and walter reed and i've seen the damage that war does. and so if we're going to go to war and we have to go to war, only going if we have to, but if we do, let's use the technology we have and defeat the enemy and minimize the loss of life that our young men and women are experiencing. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from new york seek recognition? >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> madam chair, i regret that what i am about to say could have been and was said a year ago. not much has changed but more lies have been -- lives have been destroyed and more billions of dollars have been wasted.
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all to no intelligent purpose. the whole premise of the afghanistan war is wrong. mr. nadler: the rationale to the war is to fight al qaeda. but most of the day to day fighting is against an entrenched taliban u.s. is that will outlast any -- insurgency that will outlast any foreign fighters. fighting in afghanistan does not enhance the security of the united states in any way. in 2001 we were attacked on 9/11 by al qaeda. al qaeda had bases in afghanistan and at that time it made sense to go in and destroy those bases. and we did. but that took about three weeks. we should have withdrawn after those three weeks. the c.i.a. told us a couple of years ago that there are fewer than 100 al qaeda personnel in all of afghanistan. so why do we still have 70,000 troops there? troops that will continue to risk their lives every day in a war that has already claimed far too many lives. and why should we continue pouring billions of dollars into
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an intractable mess when we should be devoting those funds to our own economy? our own jobs, our own schools, our own bridges and roads and highways, our own housing and social programs and education. afghanistan is in the middle of what is so far a 35-year civil war. we do not have either the need or the ability to determine the winner of that war which is what we're trying to do. if we continue on this course, in two years there will be hundreds more dead american soldiers, several hundred billion more dollars wasted and two or three more provinces labeled passified. but as soon as we leave, now or in 2014 or 2016 or 2024 or whenever, those provinces will promptly become unpassified, the taliban and the warlords will step up the fighting again and the afghanistan civil war will resume its normal, natural
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course. our troops are fighting valiantly but we're there on the wrong mission. we should recognize that rebuilding afghanistan in our own image, that setting up a stable government that will last is both beyond our ability and beyond our mandate to prevent terrorists from attacking the united states. we fulfilled the mission in protecting america from terrorists based in afghanistan over 10 years ago. we should have withdrawn our troops 10 years ago. we should withdraw them now. we shouldn't wait until 2014, we shouldn't have several thousand advisors advising and helping the afghanis for another 10 years. they have their only civil war they've been fighting for 35 years. i wish we could have -- we could wave a magic wand to end it but we can't. we should not participate in an afghan civil war. we do not need to pick the winner in that civil war. we do not have the ability to pick the winner in that civil war. all we are doing is wasting lives, wasting limbs, wasting people and wasting dollars.
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we ought to end our involvement in afghanistan as rapidly as we can physically remove our troops. thank you, i yield back. the chair: the gentleman from new york yields back. the clerk will read. the clerk: page 2, line 23, military personnel, navy, $27, 075,933,000. military personnel, marine corps, $12,560,999,000. military personnel, air force, $28,124,109,000. reserve personnel, army, $4,456, 823,000. reserve personnel, navy, $1,871,688,000. reserve personnel, marine corps,
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$651,861,000. reserve personnel, air force, $1,743,875,000. national guard personnel, army, $8,089,477,000. national guard personnel, air force, $3,158,015,000. title 2, operation and maintenance. operation and maintenance, army. $36,422,738,000. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from georgia rise? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 2 offered by -- printed in the congressional record offered by mr. kingston of georgia. the chair: the gentleman from georgia is recognized for five minutes.
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mr. kingston: i offer this amendment with ms. mccollum of minnesota today, it was her amendment from last year that got me involved in this. basically what this does is stops the defense department from using major sports sponsorships, such as nascar motorsports and bass fishing for recruitment tool which is no longer necessary. there are a number of reasons for this. number one, it's not effective. may 18, 2010, major brian creature said in the "usa today" that the national guard spending $26.5 million to upon sor nascar got 24,800 inquiries. of those, they got 20 potential recruits. of those, what did they get for the $26 million? not one single recruit. i want to say again, $26
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million, 24,000 inquiries, zero recruits. it's not effective. now, the national guard support group has been going around with this document saying, oh, yes, but look at all the images we get. again, out of this, according to their own document they got 40 recruits, so for the money if you do the math, that's $721,000 per recruit. why is that? well perhaps because the demographic of nascar is that 69% of the people are over 35, when they go, when they're pushing their brand or advertising at nascar, nearly 70% of the people aren't eligible. that's not their target group. the rand corporation in 2000 study group said if you want to increase recruitment, increase the number of recruiters, period. that was the number one thing.
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that's why on july 10, the army dropped out of it and they said, and i quote, though it's a beneficial endeavor for us, it is rather expensive and we decided we could repurpose that investment into other programs. when ms. mccollum offered this, it was an $80 million reduction in the savings account but since the army dropped it, now we're offering a $72 million. secondly, very, very important for us to remember that the military is reducing its size now, not because of sequestration, but before sequestration. the drop in the number of troops in the army and marines by 103,000 alone. the defense department's recruiter said the recruitment is high right now because of the economy. number three, this program has no accountability. in february, our office, as a member of the defense appropriations subcommittee, we asked the pentagon, what are your hard numbers? if you're spending $72 million
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sponsoring major sports programs, what are you getting out of it? and they couldn't come up with it. that disturbs me as a fiscal conservative. i want to believe if the pentagon is spending thatch money on something, they're able to defend it. the miller beer company put it this way. they said, on exposure, i don't care how much ebb poe sure you get, what it's supposed to be worth or what our awareness is versus the competition, i need to tell the c.e.o. and shareholders how many additional cases of beer they sold. in short, the army can't tell us how many recruits they get from this. we've got sequestration facing us. on top of the cut over the next 10 years and a troop reduction of 100,000, we may have additional cuts. secretary panetta said we need to work together to find better ways to spend the money and stretch our dollars. i'm as pro military as they
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get. i'm proud to say i believe the first district of georgia has a much military as any district in the country. we have two bramples of the military, a bombing range in there, and the only thing that's a bigger population than my military are my nascar fans. yet they're saying to me, we're pro-nascar but we realize the situation in america, for every dollar we spend, 40 cents is borrowed, we can spend this money better than we are today. again, look what we're spending per recruit, according to the national guard document which they provided our office, at least they did provide us with a document, which we did not get from the pentagon. but it's still costing us over $700,000 per recruit from their own documentation. we can do better than this. that's why ms. mccollum and i
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worked together, reached across the aisle to say, we can spend this money more effectively else. where i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? >> strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> withdraw. the chair: the gentleman withdraws. the gentleman from north carolina. >> i rise in opposition. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. >> madam chair, i thank you so muchism appreciate my colleague, ms. mccollum, and mr. kingston and what they're trying to aheave. i certainly support pearing down the budget where -- paring down the budget where it is appropriate and where it saves money. my colleague references some numbers that come from the army. the army is getting out of this type of sponsorship. mr. mchenry: i want to give you
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the numbers from the national guard that intends to stay in this form of advertising for recruiting purposes and for building good will among the american people. this sponsorship program, the national guard has, in one form, one very specific form of sponsorship they have, as well as a number of others, but this one form of sponsorship for nascar, the national guard saw a nearly 300% return on their investment. now that comes from $68 million in media exposure, it comes from $5 -- it comes from 5.5 million pieces of merchandise and apparel which has national guard on it, which has a value of roughly $7 million. s that huge return for the buck. this is why fortune 500 companies advertise through nascar. not because it feels good but because it delivers results. the fact is, no matter the size
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of the military, you're going to still need recruits. and the fact remains, if we look at the example of 2005, where the army didn't meet their recruiting goals, what we had to do is increase the budget for retention. so the fact of cutting one area of recruiting, means that in a couple of years we'll have to pay more for retention in order to keep in the same folks in the national guard that we currently need. furthermore, back to this one particular form of advertising. i think it's highly inappropriate for this congress to get into the business of specifying how best the national guard or whatever branch should spend their dollars on recruiting. the appropriations committee has done a oweman's task of making sure we -- a yoman's tack of -- task of -- a
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yeoman's task of making sure we scrub this from top to bottom. this is a good bill with bipartisan support. but when we start micromanaging advertising programs to try to recruit national guard members, we've slipped into the absurd. the national guard from the experience they have had in nascar advertising in particular, they generated 5 ,000 leagues. i wish my colleague had referenced that other than these other numbers that he referenced before, which i think are a good reason why the army is not continuing with that program. they department design it appropriately, aparently. but the national guard has gotten a huge bang for the buck and has gotten recruits because of this form of advertising. i encourage my colleagues if they voted no on the mccollum amendment last year, there are two amendments that deal with this same issue. if they voted no on those amendment, they need to vote no again.
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i would say this again, madam chair. if you voted no on those two amendments that are structurally the same, vote no again. i would encourage my colleagues to do that. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman from north carolina yields back. for what purpose does the gentlelady from minnesota seek recognition? ms. mccollum: to strike the last word. the chair: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. mccollum: we heard from the speaker that part of what this money is being spent on is branding and good will and the congress and us, today, should not be making my changes and micromanaging what the national guard is doing. i would call to our colleague's attention legislation, public law, 106-398 in the 106th congress. the legislative information system, which is available to all of us, directs us as to what really took place.
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in the 106th congress. we directed the secretary of the army on october 1, 2000 and ending december 1, 2005, to carry out a pilot program to test various recruiting approaches. one of them was to be an outreach the army was going to do with motor spots. it doesn't work. -- it doesn't work. that's why the army has dropped it. the national guard has, through their -- through what mr. kingston had, didn't come to us directly, we were provided some sponsorship information through nascar, of all the contacts and all the hits. everybody who walked through the gate was counted as being part of branding. folks, this was not supposed to be about branding. it was supposed to be about recruiting. that's why the army spokesman on cnn said when they announced
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they were ending their 10-year, multidollar taxpayer funded relingtsship with nascar, quote, it was not a great investment. the navy pulled out. the marine corps pulled out of nascar years ago. yet the pentagon has paid one racing team, mr. earnhardt's team, $136 million in taxpayer funds for the national guard logo on his car and the name -- in the name of recruitment. this year, they're paying mr. earnhardt again $26.5 million to which the national guard has reported, this is what the guard told me, 20 qualified candidates expressing interest, zero, zero actual recruits. so over the past two year the national guard has spent more than $20 million in taxpayer funds on bass fishing tournaments. we're in a fiscal crisis. bass fishing is not national
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security. this congress is cutting money to needy families because we're in a fiscal crisis yet the pentagon is spending in excess of $80 million on nascar sponsorships, bass fishing, ultimate cage fighting and other sponsorships. it's a waste of taxpayer money, it doesn't work. over the past few days, the professional sports lobby has come out in full force to protect their taxpayer funded subsidy. for the purposes of the 2013 defense appropriations bill those pro teams are military contractors who have failed to deliver on their contract for the past -- in the past for the taxpayers for recruits. i want to thank representative kingston for his leadership on this, and joining me to cut a pentagon program that's just not effective. this community in which we're having this bill discussed right now has been bipartisan in the way the bill has been put together and bipartisan in the way the amendment has been
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offered. if the private sector wants to pull their money to sponsor military race car teams to demonstrate patriotism, i say fantastic and go for it. but it is my job to be a steward of taxpayers' funds. i want to be clear about something else this amendment does not do. it does not prohibit or limits military recruiters from recruiting at nascar races or any other sports event. i just want the military recruiters to attend the races and community events where there's potential recruits. we mood, as mr. kingston pointed out, more recruiters doing their jobs in the right way and they have ideas how we can do this better. we need to listen to recruiters. i think it will be -- you know, irresponsible and outrageous that congress would go ahead and continue to borrow money from china to pay for one race car driver's team, $26 million for delivering zero recruits.
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our nation's facing a fiscal crisis. communities and families and seniors and vulnerable children are bearing the brunt of deep and painful budget cuts. congress needs to get its priorities in order and stop protecting military spending that doesn't work. i urge my colleagues to support mr. kingston's amendment, it's an honor to be a partner to it. we need to cut wasteful spending and reduce this deficit. the chair: the gentlelady's time has expired. does any other member wish to speak to the amendment? the gentlelady from north carolina. >> i would like to strike the last word. the chair: the gentlelady is recognized. >> like my colleague, mr. mchenry, i'm rising because i do oppose this amendment. saying the department of defense has to limit what they do and the side how they can recruit and mainly it's micromanaging, the biggest issue here is this will not -- this approach is not going to save a dime in the long run.
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mrs. myrick: because when recruitment goals aren't met, and that is a challenge, the military pays out nearly $1 billion a year in extra recruitment bonuses to maintain needed recruitment numbers. and we're talking, of course, about the national gourd, who did have a 4-1 return on investment in motorsports but we've got to be aware we've got to recruit men and women where they are, we need the best men and women that we can in our military service and of course we owe all of those who are currently serving a great debt of gratitude but i don't believe we need to tell them how they know best how to do their recruiting. i believe strongly in rooting out government waste. but that's not what this amendment does. because in the long run we end up spending more money on recruitment. as my colleague said before, the
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house has twice voted down this amendment, it's the same vote. and i urge them to do so again. and i yield back. the chair: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. any other member wish to speak to this amendment? the gentleman from mississippi, for what reason does he seek recognition? >> move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> madam chair, i rise in opposition to this amendment, just this past weekend i had the great honor and privilege to send over 150 young men and women off to fort bliss to prepare their final training to go overseas. this is the 857th engineering company. mr. palazzo: their mission is the horizontal construction which is pretty much they're going to be clearing roads and as we know that's one of the most dangerous missions in afghanistan. now, i was too busy shaking hands and talking to families and others to notice what i would probably have seen in the parking lot and that would have been a lot of bumper stickers
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and on those bumper stickers it wouldn't be faces or political advertisement, of course i wish there would be some. but it was more numbers. number three, number 11, number 24, number 14. and most likely there were a few number 88's out there which is the car dale earnhardt drives for nascar. so with that right now is absolutely no reason this congress should be telling the department of defense how and where to spend money on recruitment. sports sponsorships have been a major source of recruitment and provided a great deal of return on investment. the only other option is to spend more on recruitment and retention bonuses. as my colleague just mentioned, when they file below a certain number they spend billions of dollars and we're not talking about billions of dollars. so this actually saves taxpayers money so we can continue to find the young men and women to serve in our nation's military. as it currently stands, the national guard cannot advertise on television which significantly limits their opportunities to reach the
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audience that they want to reach. this is an effective program that remains a key tool for our national guard and other branches of our military services. this bill has already taken serious cuts from advertising and marketing budgets format are in corps, navy, air force and national guard accounts, which have all been cut significantly. already, already before this amendment. there's no reason why we should continue to tie their hands by cutting more funds from the budget. these sponsorships provide the ability to market and create branding opportunities and familiarity with the service branches in areas where market research shows that the target audience spends its time. for example, nascar fans are very large. up to 70 million. i think that's a low number. very patriotic, very pro-military fan base and are very local to teams and drivers. these are who we want joining
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our u.s. military. madam chair, we are currently dealing with very serious cuts to our military because of sequestration. this is not the time or the place to be cutting the tools that our military is using to recruit the very best, patriotic young people who want to serve our nation in its military. the military is maximizing their resources to fulfill their mission at home and abroad. if this wasn't successful, they wouldn't be doing it. i ask that my colleagues oppose the amendment. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. any other member wish to speak in this amendment? the gentleman from georgia. >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman from georgia is recognized for five minutes. >> madam speaker, i'd like to voice my opposition to the amendment sponsored by mr. kingston, ms. mccollum, aimed at banning post war sponsorship of the private defense. truly we are in an era where the people's government should take efforts to trim the budget wherever possible. this measure, madam speaker, does not attack an excess of
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government. mr. bishop: if accepted the u.s. government will be cutting out a proven, successful investment in our nation's military personnel. the army, the national guard, the national guard association strongly oppose this amendment. last year over 280 members of a bipartisan vote opposed this amendment. appropriations committee chairman rogers, defense subcommittee chairman young have been both opposed to this measure in committee votes and floor votes. chairman young has repeatedly said in 2012 that he opposes it. our military deserves access to the most qualified potential recruits available. a vote in favor of this amendment would handicap our military's recruiting efforts. starting in 1999, marketing the military through sports opened the d.o.d.'s efforts to brand and showcase their services to a specific target audience. the national guard cannot advertise on broadcast television so professional sports sponsorships becomes an
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efficient, effective means of reaching target markets for recruiting and retention of citizen soldiers and airmen. our soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines are athletes. it only makes sense to advertise and market to professional sports venues. athletes share common values with the military such as honor, integrity, individual responsibility, teamwork and self-sacrifice. additionally athletes are a key demographic from in the men and women who want to serve -- in the men and women who want to serve. only one in every four young people is even eligible to join. the d.o.d.'s success rate in recruiting stems from that direct -- their direct access to potential recruits and influences of men and women about their interest in scroining the military often found at sporting events. pro sports sponsorships generate recruitment opportunities and provide a national platform to promote each branch's image. in addition to recruitment and a
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recognizable national profile, those sponsorships in motorsports spotlight a good return on investment dollar for dollar. in 2011 alone army national guard spent $44 million on motorsports sponsorships but based on market value the total media exposure the guard received totaled over $150 million. a 336% return on investment. if less is spent on advertising, history proves that d.o.d. will have to increase dollars for bonuses to retain military personnel and for recruiting bonuses. d.o.d. motorsports partnerships have resulted in key transfers of technology. the first humvees sent to iraq had canvas doors. additional armor added created challenges to the humvee's suspension systems. the marines turned to nascar engineers to help solve the problem. the additional project developed by the marines is a roller.
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it can detonate explosive devices while protecting marines in the vehicle. one of the first rollers in iraq took a blast and saved the three marines inside. the mine roller uses new suspension technology developed by the joe gibbs nascar racing team. base commanders say that cooperation between base workers and businesses across the country is saving troops' lives. beyond the direct investment, d.o.d. pro sponsorships positively influence communities surrounding our nation's personnel. for example, the national guard works together with their partners in racing and india car to address unemployment -- indy car to address unemployment. this amendment would likely limit the military from participating in the olympics, flyover of the games, sponsoring marathons such as the marine corps marathon, as well as the blue angels, the thunderbirds and the golden nights. cutting off funding for d.o.d. sports sponsorships hinders
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military recruitment of qualified candidates, impairs and severely damages a positive financial investment in our military. to directly quote the d.o.d., quote, to assure the nation is fully capable of performing, we must recruit highly qualified men and women from across america. this amendment will directly impact the recruiting quality and overall mission requirements, increasing costs and forcing reductions in the standards for ac sessions. a vote for this amendment is a vote against the effectiveness of our military. please join me in opposing this amendment. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. any other member wish to speak to the amendment? the gentleman from north carolina, for what purpose does he seek recognition? >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman the gentleman from north carolina is recognized for five -- the gentleman from north carolina is recognized for five minutes. >> i rise in opposition to this amendment and i'm not going to repeat what my colleague from georgia just said.
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he covered the facts well. i think it's important here that we recognize that relationships matter. and the relationship that we have seen with the military and especially nascar, it seems to be getting the brunt of the attention here, is a long-time relationship and important relationship. mr. kissell: nascar grew up in north carolina, its home is in my district in central north carolina. nascar has spread throughout the nation which we're excited about. still the roots are here at home and in rural america. i don't think it's any coincidence that we look at our military forces, about 41% of our military is from what we describe as rural america. which is only 17% of our population. and that relationship between the military and rural america is very important. the relationship between nascar and rural america and all america's very important.
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we don't need to interfere with that relationship. i don't think it's any surprise that the most popular driver in nascar drives the national guard car. number 88, dale earnhardt jr. this brings kind of the relationship and the viewing that cannot be done in many other ways. and so we don't need to strike that relationship. we need to build upon that because you start looking at the ramifications as my colleague talked about earlier, other ways that this money can be used to help build this relationship, we look at nascar, special forces working with nascar do develop equipment for our mill -- to develop equipment for our military. the idea of how we can absorb the energy to help our soldiers that are in combat situations, nascar works on this. the tickets that are given to our military families, to the
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military themselves, this is all part of that relationship. it works, we need for it to work. i oppose this amendment and ask my colleagues to also oppose it. i yield back. the chair: any other member wish to -- the gentleman from florida, for what pump does he seek recognition? -- purpose does he seek recognition? the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> thank you. we were at home watching nascar on television a couple years ago and my wife said, what are the armed services doing sponsoring nascar cars? don't they have a better use it spend their money than to spend those big bucks on nascar? and i said, well, katie, i can understand why you would think that. mr. posey: but we have a volunteer military and they have to advertise for recruits somewhere. where would you think the money would be better spent?
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do you think they should advertise is to phil harmonic or maybe she should advertise it to ballet? we could surely give some mean par troopers if we advertised at the ballet. i think that nascar is a very appropriate place to advertise for recruits. just like boxing rings might be, the cage fights might be, and so i made some inquiries about it to the armed services and they said, you're exactly right on point. as our good friend, mr. mchenry from north carolina, shared with you a little while ago, the statistics are overwhelmingly in favor of expenditures where you get the greatest return and the nascar sponsorships seems to have the greatest return which results in the greatest savings for our taxpayers back home. now, i wish we were spending this time right now, rather than trying to micromanage how our military most efficiently
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advertises for recruits, discussing the $14 billion our government overpaid to people who were not entitled to unemployment compensation but got it anyway. i wish right now we were discussing the $4 billion in refunds in the form of tax credits our government has given to bogus dependents of people who are here illegally. i wish we were talking about the millions of dollars that we wasted in the g.a.o. i wish we were talking about the millions of dollars we've wasted in crony capitalism, vests in solyndra and the like, in the so-called green energy enterprises. but no, we're not. we're sitting here today, some people are trying to micromanage how our military gets recruits which is an all-volunteer army and they're telling the people
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who are best at managing our military how to do their job. you know, it's an old adage, it's an old cliche. it seems like everybody knows how to make a baby stop crying except the person holding it. and i think in this case we should yield to the best judgment of our armed services and how they feel they need to recruit. i have seen democratic presidential candidates advertise on nascar. i saw democratic gubernatorial candidates advertise on race cars. i was at a speedway once and ran into somebody from the other side of the aisle who i never expected to see at a race track and said, what are you doing here? they said, well, when a person is running for governor decided we needed to focus on middle america, she decided she wanted to sponsor a race car at that
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speedway and they said, you know what? it was the best investment of campaign money we ever spent. that's the other side of the aisle. i'm sure i could talk about my friends on this side of the aisle but in this case, i'd like you to rely upon and reflect upon the comments made by mr. mchenry, who talked about the very pure and simple results and accountability that's been achieved by letting the military, the people we trust the most with protecting our country and our freedoms, do the job that they were entitled to do. thank you, madam chair, i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. any other member -- the gentleman from florida. for what purpose do you seek recognition? >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. young: most of the debate i
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would make on this amendment would be similar to what i made earlier with the military bands. i won't repeat those again but i mention that this amendment has been defeated several times. last year on the defense appropriations bills by this same house. we have an interesting situation here, though, today. this amendment is very similar to language later on in the bill that is subject to a point of order. now, it has been skillfully rewritten so this one is not subject to a point of order but it is basically the same issue. understand, the united states of america does not have the largest military in the world. we do have, by far, the best. but not the largest. and our military is all volunteer. the members of the military serve because they want to. but as the all-volunteer force rotates and changes, members
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are leaving. they retire, their time is up they get out, they have to constantly be replaced. there has to be a constant flow of recruits coming in as the older members leave. the military has been running recruiting programs for years and years and years, and very successfully. they know a little bit about what it takes to encourage recruiting. the amendment itself does more than just strike out the sports, nascar, all these issues. it cuts $30 million more than than was spent on these issues. i don't know why they want to take that extra $30 million but anyway, i just think that we should not pass this amendment. it is, like i said, very similar to one that is in the
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bill that is subject to a point of order. i say let the military run the recruiting as they have done successfully for all these years to maintain an all-volunteer force. a powerful message of the young americans or the older americans who want to serve, men and women, want to serve their country in the military. and these recruiting programs get their attention, direct them to where they need to be directed. i think that this is just not a good idea, to pass this amendment. the chair: does any other member wish to speak to the amendment? if not, the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from georgia. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. ms. mccollum: madam chair. we would like a recorded vote. the chair: a recorded vote is requested. pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18 further proceedings on the amendment offered by the
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gentleman from georgia, will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. garamendi: thank you, madam chair. after more than a decade of war, it's time to accelerate our drawdown of troops from afghanistan and bring the war to a close. we've sent our brave service men and women to after dwan tan to eliminate the terrorists who would do us harm. they have done this with exceptional skill. they have killed most of al qaeda's top leaders. under president obama's leadership and thanks to the courage of our special forces, osama bin laden has met his just end. the president has outlined a plan for winding down this war and i support drawing down our military presence in afghanistan even more quickly than the president has suggested. we should welcome our troops
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back as heroes and ensure that they receive the support and care that is due when they return. our military service members and their families have born and continue to bear far more than their share of the burden of this war. i'm a member of the house armed services committee and i represent the 10th district of california, home to travels air force base, the largest air mobility command unit in the air force. nearby in marysville, california, biel air force base, the lead for the intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance. together, 16,000 service members across the active duty national guard and reserve and over 57 -- 75,000 veterans live in my district and the surrounding area. these are the people who are disproportionately bearing the cost of this war. as their representative, i owe it to them to make sure that we do not ask of them any more than is absolutely necessary to
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ensure america's national security. but the majority here in this house is determined to prevent even a serious debate about ending the war in afghanistan. they have inserted language into the national defense authorization act that would actually slow down the withdrawal of u.s. forces and keep nearly 70,000 troops in afghanistan until at least 2015. when the ranking member of the house armed services committee tried to offer an amendment to replace this provision, the majority said it was out of order. when a bipartisan group of members of congress joined together on an amendment replacing this provision, the majority blocked that amendment. this is the longest war in america's history, claiming thousands of lives, costing hundreds of billions of dollars and the majority simply doesn't want to talk about it. we must talk about this war.
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we must take time to think deeply about the sacrifice of those who have served. to date, 1,875 of our military service members have been killed in afghanistan, leaving thousands more to endure the unimaginable grief of loss of a loved one. 15,000 -- 15,322 of our troops have been wounded seriously, suffering life-altering injuries. not including in that number are those with psychological wounds. the invisible but no less devastating. we have spent half a trillion dollars in taxpayer dollars on the war in afghanistan and this legislation would allocate $88 billion more to be spent in this year alone. there are some who would continue this war indefinitely. they oppose a fixed timeline for ending combat operations. they oppose any concrete plans for transitioning full
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responsibility to afghanistan for security as quickly as possible. even worse, they would have american troops continuing to fight against a domestic insurgency in afghanistan and they think it's america's job to defeat those armed factions that threaten to cause -- that threaten the karzai government, perhaps the most corrupt government in this world. in fact, they've inserted language into this bill that says the u.s. objective in afghanistan is to defend the karzai government against the taliban. and now they also have an interest in american troops defeating any group taking on the karzai government, involving us in a multi-sided civil war. it was never the american mission in afghanistan, nor should it be. as president obama clearly said last week, and i quote, our goal is to destroy al qaeda.
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we began a military operation in afghanistan with a very clear reason. it's time for taos end this war and bring our troops home. i thank you, madam chair. the chair: the clerk will read. the clerk: page 8, line 3, operation and may not navens, navy. $41,463,773,000. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? >> madam chair, to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> madam chair, i rise to strike the last word and i would like to have a colloquy between myself, the chairman and the gentleman from washington on an issue regarding costs associated with the security clearance process. mr. dicks: will the gentleman yield? >> i yield. mr. dicks: i would be happy to
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discuss the security clearance cost. >> as the gentleman knows, security clearances are necessary to protect national security and are required for thousands of jobs. mr. farr: the process is also expensive. d.o.d. pays billions of dollars to the office of personnel management, o.p.m., to manage the security clearance program. o.p.m. has made improvements in the investigation process so the program is no longer on g.a.o.'s high risk list but the problem eremains that ompt p.m. relies on manual labor to process security clearances. the research scientist at security research center, under the office of secretary of defense for readiness, has developed a suite of automated tools. they could save millions of dollars without sacrificing quality if these tools were incorporated into the security reinvestigation process. i greatly appreciate that the
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chairman and ranking member of the defense subcommittee have include red port language encouraging d.o.d. to investigate automated tools for security clearance process. would my colleagues agree that d.o.d. needs to leverage the research of this to integrate their interface into d.o.d. security investigation process. mr. dicks: will the gentleman yield? mr. farr: i yield to the gentleman from washington. mr. dicks: to my good friend from california, with the tight budget constraints the d.o.d. is facing, i appreciate him bringing to our attention that the department can save millions by requiring d.o.d. security investigation by using this -- innovation use this tool. mr. farr: i thank the gentleman for his response. i hope to attach to the bill language directing the d.o.d.
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to conduct a review but in the interest of house rules i chose not to. >> will the gentleman yield? mr. farr: i yield to the distinguished chairman. mr. young: i appreciate the gentleman's flexibility in finding ways to address this issue. like my good friend from washington, mr. dicks, i agree that we should work with our good friend, mr. farr, to ensure that d.o.d. is leveraging the security clearance research of the personnel security research center to improve the d.o.d. security reinvestigation process and i thank the gentleman for bringing this to our attention. mr. farr: i thank the distinguished chairman and ranking member, my distinguished friend, mr. dicks, in their leadership, their friendship and their cooperation in making things work more efficiently and more cost effectively.
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i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman may not reserve. mr. farr: yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time the clerk will read. the clerk: page 8, line 12, operation and mavent nance, marine corps. $6,075,667,000. operation and maintenance air force, $35,488,000 675 -- $35,488,675,000. page 13, line 9 after the dollar amount, insert increased by $8 million. page 27, line 7, after the dollar amount, insert increased by $16 million. the chair: the gentleman from california is recognized for five minutes. >> my amendment will provide
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funding to the air national guard to obtain much-needed fire fighting equipment so they can more effectively combat the devastating wild fires that destroy millions of acres of land and homes every year in the western united states. mr. gallegly: the likelihood of calling upon maps equipped air force and air national guard c-130's has incareered. they are modular air fire fighting systems that drop retardant to create fire breaks. in 2006, there were 44 fixed -- by 1996, there were 44 fixed wing aircraft, by 2004, there were 19 and now it stands at eight. additional aircraft on interim contract with the forest service and those on loan from
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alaska and canada are being used to fill the gap. in 2011, 74,000 fires burned -- burned 8.7 million acres. the most recent 10-year average ind dates -- indicates the fires burned 7.4 million acres per year. as the fleet diminishes, stress on remaining aircraft increases. the distance between fires and available aircraft have been increasing. the result is more fires burning out of control. additionally an increase of flight time and cycles contributes to an earlier demise of the remaining aircraft. only eight ci had -- c-130's are available to supplement the forest service fleet. even when all eight are called upon, the number of heavy air tanker aircraft is less than half that existed in 2003.
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we clearly need more aircraft in the forest -- and the forest service is not likely to produce aircraft capable of producing the -- meeting the need for two or three years or probably longer. my amendment would provide an -- a solution by providing $8 million to the air national guard so they can make air wings capable of operating and flying two legacy maps, one units each. that would give us four additional tanker aircraft to fight wildfires that have been ravaging the western united states. my amendment would also appropriate $16 billion for the air force to procure two new aerial dispersal units for the use for the air national guard. activating the legacy maps units will help get more planes fighting fires this next year, while these new aerial dispersement units are being produced and hopefully available for use within two years. our national -- our nation desperately needs our aircraft to fight wildfires and the air
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guard is are ready to go to work -- is ready to go to work. we need more aircraft to help fight the fires that have ravages our states this season alone and i urge the support of my colleagues and, madam chairwoman, i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from washington seek recognition? mr. dicks: i rise in support of the gentleman's amendment. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. dicks: this amendment seeks to add more funding to purchase equipment vie toll to the disaster mission -- vital to the disaster mission of the air national guard. recently forest fires have been devastating colorado and the air national guard has been fighting alongside the forest service. the modular airborne fire fighting system provides emergency capable to supplemental existing commercial tanker support on wild land fires. this system aids the forest service when all other air tankers are activated but
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further assistance is needed. the forest service can request help from the air force's unit who can be ready in a few hours' notice with this modular system. when the air national guard adds the modular airborne fire fighting system to their c-130 aircraft, they are adding another capability to their aircraft. creating a dual mission aircraft without major modifications to an existing piece of equipment is efficient and cost effective and quite frankly we need to get a new c-130-j's for the guard and i hope we can do that. that's been a problem we've had with o.m.b., over the scoring on this, whether you could lease them or buy them. but this is an interim step which is a good one and i think we should accept the gentleman's amendment. the chair: any other member wish to speak to the gentleman's amendment? if not the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no.
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in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have, it the ayes have it, the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from ohio seek recognition? >> i have an amendment. i think the clerk has to read first. the chair: the clerk will read. the clerk: page 9, line 1, operation and maintenance, defensewide, including transfer of funds, $31,780,813,000. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from oregon seek recognition? the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 8 printed in the congressional record offered by mr. plaur of -- blumenauer of oregon. the chair: the gentleman from oregon is recognized for five minutes. mr. blumenauer: thank you, madam chair. we take great pride in the american military trained fighting force. we work hard to make sure they're probably equipped but decks of military training -- decades of military training has left a dangerous -- has left
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dangerous explosives and harmful chemicals on millions of acres of united states land. this contaminated real estate now serves as housing, schools, parks and playgrounds in every congressional district in the country. in fact, you may have read in the morning paper, down at what is called the yards near national stadium, the development that is being worked there, they uncovered a thousand-pound bomb, less than one kilometer from where we're debating today. to help the department of defense become a better partner for our communities and our constituents, i strongly urge that my colleagues support an amendment that would preserve the department of defense's efforts to employ skill labor and high-tech companies to clean up these dangerous liabilities and create economic development
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opportunities on these dangerous properties. congress established the defense environment restoration fund form early used defense site program in 1986 to remove hazardous material from former department of defense properties and allow for safe reuse. over two decades later 2,600 properties nationwide require cleanup at an estimated cost of over $18 billion. and i will tell you, my colleagues, after having worked in this area for over a dozen years, that probably understates it. the current funding for the program is less than $300 million. 1/2 of 1% of base defense spending. at this rate the department estimates at this low ball figure of $18 billion we will not finish cleaning up the sites
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we know about for the next 200 -- 50 years. -- 250 years. my amendment would simply restore funding to the current level to ensure we can continue work removing these dangerous burdens from our communities within our lifetime. to say nothing of our great, great -- our great-great-grandchildren. at the time when total military spending amounts to more in one day with what we spend in an entire year, i strongly urge my colleagues to reprioritize our investments. these sites are decades, in some cases they are hundreds of years old. now the defense department has an obligation to clean up after itself. and they've made great progress. they've made critical technological breakthroughs in removing unexploded ordinance,
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making it less expensive and some of the investments that we have made have actually saved lives overseas. because the same technology that will help us figure out whether it's a hub cap or a 105-millimeter she'll can make a difference in -- shell can make a difference in i.e.d.'s overseas in afghanistan or iran. i strongly urge my colleagues to support this amendment. it has operational impacts today for our military, it has economic development impact which will help us return millions of acres to productive use, and it's the right thing to do. i don't want to be in a situation where we short change what the department of defense does. remember in prior debates mr. dicks, mr. young may remember, i brought to the floor wearing the
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lizard coloring books that we were distributing to school children to warn them of the hazards because we hadn't invested enough to clean up. or the children that were killed in a former defense operation in san diego because they found a bomb when they were playing. i strongly urge that you approve this amendment and simply return the funding to the level that we have today. it will make a difference for the military now and for generations to come. i appreciate your consideration and yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. any other member on the gentleman's amendment? if not, the question is on the amendment. for what purpose does the gentleman from florida seek recognition? >> i rise in opposition to the amendment. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. young: i'm not opposed to
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the gentleman, his effort. what he wants to do. but a lot of these sites -- there's no disposition. we won't know what's going to happen to them, whether they stay as owned by the federal government, will they go to communities? we don't know the answer to that, we don't know the disposition. but they do need cleaning up and there's no doubt about that. here's my problem with this amendment. he takes funds from the defensewide readiness fund, the operations and maintenance fund, which provides for readiness, provides for training, it provides for our special forces. it provides for the support, safety and quality of life programs for our troops. and their families. including programs to assist spouses of service members with employment and job training which is a key initiative of the first lady. as much as i agree that this needs to be done, we do not want
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to take it out of the defense operational maintenance which is our defensewide operation and maintenance fund. so i'd like to oppose the amendment, while i would like to help him in some other way to accomplish this. but not from this fund. that is so important. readiness is readiness is readiness. and our troops have to be trained, they have to be equipped, they have to be ready and i oppose the amendment. mr. blumenauer: will the gentleman yield? mr. young: yes, sir. mr. blumenauer: i appreciate your understanding of the importance. if we don't prolong it and debate and recorded vote and all of this sort of thing, would it be possible to work with you and the ranking member as we move forward, to see if there is an opportunity for us to plus-up
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this fund a little further? in other areas? mr. young: i thank the gentleman for the question and i say absolutely yes. i would very much like to do this. because i believe we need to do what it is you want to do. but i just can't support taking it from an account that provides for the readiness of our troops. mr. dicks: i would also support the gentleman in efforts to try to find another less objectionable source for the funding. mr. blumenauer: thank you. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. any other member wish to speak to the gentleman's amendment? it if not, the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from oregon. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes -- the noes have it. the noes have it and the amendment is not agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from ohio seek recognition? mr. kucinich: i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will read.
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will the gentleman specify his amendment? mr. kucinich: amendment number 89. the chair: amendment number 9. the clerk will report -- 89. the clerk will report. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. kucinich of ohio. page 9, line 6, after the dollar amount insert, reduce by $10 million. page 35, line 15, after the dollar amount insert, increase by $10 million. page 35, line 23, after the dollar amount insert, increased by $10 million. the chair: the gentleman from ohio is recognized for five minutes. mr. kucinich: thank you, madam speaker. today i along with my colleague, bob hell in her, are offering an amendment -- kell in her, are offering an amendment to restore an overall loss of $10 million to research funding dedicated to finding a cure for gulf war illness. an illness that directly effects over 1/4 of veterans from the first gulf war. this amendment has the support of the veterans of foreign wars, it has the support of the vietnam veterans of america, and